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New research into HIV and STI prevention

The Ministry of Health is to fund research into behaviour relating to the contraction of Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and Sexually transmitted infection (STI) in a bid to improve targeted prevention services.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern this week announced $300,000 funding for the research project.

“There is much talk about inclusion of the rainbow community but part of that is ensuring there is no disadvantage in terms of healthcare,” Ms Ardern said.

“This will help make that a reality.”

She said the research would study rates of HIV and STI testing, sexual behaviour, condom use and inequities in these behaviours.

“This will help the Ministry guide the purchase, targeting, delivery and evaluation of HIV and STI prevention services in NZ.”

The Prime Minister also announced further details about the establishment of the Rainbow Wellbeing Legacy Fund that was announced last year.

She said the Fund would be managed by the Rule Foundation and would receive a $1 million endowment from the Crown.

The inaugural application round is to open in June 2020 and will provide up to $100,000 to rainbow organisations working to improve mental health, particularly for young people, Ms Ardern said.