AIDS 2018: Meet the H-TEAM

From 23-27 July, Amsterdam will host the 22nd International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2018) in the Amsterdam RAI. First convened during the peak of the AIDS epidemic in 1985, it is now the largest conference on HIV and AIDS in the world – a platform where science, advocacy and human rights intersect. The biennial congress is organized by the International AIDS Society (IAS) and offers the opportunity to strengthen policies and programmes that ensure an evidence-based response to the epidemic.

The theme of AIDS 2018 is “Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges”, drawing attention to the need of rights-based approaches to more effectively reach key populations, particularly in regions where epidemics are growing, such as Eastern Europe, Central Asia and the North-African/Middle Eastern regions. During the event there are several opportunities to meet with and learn more about the H-TEAM’s activities.

Meet the H-TEAM

* Monday 23 July 10.30-10.35h: H-TEAM short documentary film screening (Code MOCA23)

Screening of the short documentary about the H-TEAM Initiative, titled “Joining forces for a future with no new HIV infections”. The screening takes place in the Global Village Screening Room and is freely accessible.

* Tuesday 24 july 11.00-12.30h: Presentation of the AHI campaign ‘Hebikhiv’ and its impact by Udi Davidovich and Wim Zuilhof (Code TUWS05)

During session ‘HIV elimination is now a reality for gay men: what is working and how do we replicate our successes for all?’
Location: GV session room 2, Global Village (freely accessible)

* Tuesday 24 July 12.30-14.30h: Poster Presentation by Karlijn Groen (Code TUPEE716)

Abstract: “Implementing proactive HIV testing in General Practice in Amsterdam within a fast-track city initiative (H-TEAM)”
Location: Poster Exhibition area, Hall 1, next to the Global Village (ground floor, by the Main Entrance)

Karlijn Groen is a researcher within the H-TEAM for Work Package 2 – Faster and More Frequent Testing. She has conducted research on the implementation of several interventions for Amsterdam GPs, including interactive training sessions, directed towards targeted and proactive HIV testing. Results of the study show that the decreasing trend in requested HIV tests by Amsterdam GP’s prior to 2015 has reversed, coinciding with the start of the H-TEAM initiative. Join Karlijn’s poster presentation to find out more about her research on these GP interventions and its results and implications.

* Tuesday 24 July 12.30-14.30h: Poster Presentation by Elske Hoornenborg (Code LBPEC034)

Abstract: “Different PrEP modalities for different people: switches between daily and event-driven PrEP among MSM and TGP”
Location: Poster Exhibition area, Hall 1, next to the Global Village (ground floor, by the Main Entrance)

Elske Hoornenborg, a H-TEAM researcher, will present a late breaker poster based on her submitted abstract “Different PrEP modalities for different people: switches between daily and event-driven PrEP among MSM and TGP”.

* Tuesday 24 July 13.00-14.00h: Poster Discussion Abstract by Elske Hoornenborg during session on PrEP (Code TUPDX01 / TUPDX0104)

Abstract: “High incidence of hepatitis C virus (re-)infections among PrEP users in the Netherlands: implications for prevention, monitoring and treatment”
Location: Session Room Hall 11B

During the session ‘PrEP in the real world: What are we learning’ Tuesday afternoon, Elske Hoornenborg, a H-TEAM researcher for Work Package 1 – PrEP, will present a poster based on her research into hepatitis C virus (HCV) prevalence among PrEP users in the Netherlands. She studied the characteristics of newly infected individuals among MSM and transgender persons (TGP) who use PrEP. The study showed that in the Netherlands, incidence of initial and re-HCV infection among HIV-negative MSM on PrEP was high and comparable to that observed in HIV-positive MSM. Visit this session to learn more about HCV in relation to the use of PrEP among MSM and transgender people.

* Thursday 26 July, 12.30-14.30h: Poster Presentation by Ard van Sighem (Code THPEC225)

Abstract: “Earlier HIV diagnosis among men who have sex with men in Amsterdam following interventions to increase awareness of early HIV infection”.
Location: Poster Exhibition area, Hall 1, next to the Global Village (ground floor, by the Main Entrance)

H-TEAM researcher Ard van Sighem investigated the impact of the H-TEAM’s interventions to increase awareness of early HIV infection, including a multi-media campaign targeting MSM, on early-diagnosed HIV infections in Amsterdam compared to the rest of the Netherlands. Results show that MSM in Amsterdam are now being diagnosed earlier in their HIV infection than in the rest of the country. This may be an indicator of the effectiveness of H-TEAM’s efforts. At the poster presentation, Ard van Sighem will present his research findings, as well as a more in-depth look at their possible implications.

All of the posters will be displayed daily from 10.00 – 18.30h for the duration of the conference (from Tuesday 24 July until Thursday 26 July) in the Poster Exhibition area.

About AIDS 2018 & Amsterdam

When HIV/AIDS first appeared as a public health threat in the 1980s, the Netherlands faced the challenge head on, embracing scientific evidence and working with populations that other countries marginalized and stigmatized. Today, Amsterdam is a “Fast Track City” and is one of the first cities worldwide to reach the 90-90-90 goals of the Joint United Nations. The city has committed to accelerating action to ensure that the world can reach the ambitious target of ending AIDS by 2030.

AIDS 2018 aims to promote human rights based and evidence-informed HIV responses that are tailored to the needs of particularly vulnerable communities, including people living with HIV, displaced populations, men who have sex with men, people who use drugs, sex workers, transgender people, women, girls and young adults. AIDS 2018 hopes to encourage a collaborative effort to fight the disease beyond country borders.

AIDS 2018 will showcase important advances in HIV prevention science, including the latest research on vaccines and other future prevention tools; new lessons learned from the scale up of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) and other proven interventions; and innovative strategies for key populations, such as adolescents and young adults.

For more information on the conference, visit To consult the programme of the entire conference, visit For the Global Village programme, visit

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