We are really proud to announce that our GMI status report has been published this week . The report gives the details of the outcomes of the GMI Partnership HIV prevention services over the last 5 years and illustrates the significant differences the programme has made to the lives of thousands of MSM across London. Perhaps what stands out most are the tangible, long term changes to the behaviour of men who are at high risk of becoming HIV positive, which the programme works with, and the rigorous commitment of GMI services to providing value for money. Here’s a summary of the key report findings for the integrated areas that make up GMI:
Our health trainers work at bars, clubs, saunas, clinics and special events across London. They are a first point of contact for MSM (men who have sex with men) on issues of sexual health and HIV prevention.
In 5 years we completed an impressive 1268 health trainer outreach sessions at 94 venues across London. We approached over 20,000 MSM and referred over 3,800 to services across London (such as alcohol and drug, youth, mental health, other GMI services). Of the men we spoke to 80% said their knowledge improved straight after their conversations with our health trainers. 63% said they were motivated to make changes to their sexual behaviour straight after speaking to a health trainer and 34% said they were planning to have an HIV test.
We display sexual health and wellbeing resources at venues across London. Since 2008 we have distributed 277,753 resources on 3522 unique visits to 121 venues.
One of the leaflets distributed as part of our Resource Distribution Work
Peer Support Mentoring Services
The mentoring service pairs men who are at significant risk of becoming HIV positive with trained mentors. They work through 9 modules focused on the emotional side of risk and safer sex. For more info see here.
In total, 170 men were assessed as suitable for the programme. Of the men who completed the programme there were considerable changes in each of the key areas monitored: behaviour, attitude, skill and knowledge. Most striking was the rise in the protected sex score which rose from 71% at enrolment to 92% after completing the programme. Behaviour improved from 64% to 82%, and condom negotiation increased from 70% to 86%. The sexual health questionnaire done 6 months after the programme indicates that behavioural changes are sustained even after the programme has been completed.
Our counselling service is offered to MSN with entrenched risk behaviour around HIV exposure. 551 have been assessed as suitable for the counselling programme. Of those who completed the programme there were significant improvements in behaviour, attitude, skills and knowledge, as with the mentoring programme. This is especially noteworthy given the deep rooted nature of unprotected sex for many of the clients on the counselling programme. Two notable improvements were in condom negotiation, which improved from 81% to 86% and protected sex, which rose from 66% to 73%.
Why GMI’s services are so cost effective ?
One key finding was that GMI services represent a cost effective approach to HIV prevention. The lifetime cost of treating one person with HIV is between £280,000 and £360,000. Compare this to the £453,824 which GMI receives annually through the PLHPP (Pan London HIV Prevention Project). As a result GMI would only need to prevent 2 men per year from becoming HIV positive to be cost effective.
What does the status report show?
1. GMI services are cost-effective and show long term behavioural changes for those enrolled on programmes.
2. One-to-one HIV prevention work in London is vital, especially those considering the emotional issues related to (un)protected sex.
3. An integrated HIV prevention approach works. It ensures that the services provided are in the client’s best interest and allows movement between appropriate services.
4. Support services which address emotional issues related to safer sex are essential alongside other key areas such as HIV testing, knowing your status and early diagnosis in order to reduce risk.
To see the full report please click here.
If you would like more information about any of the free services GMI provides please e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org