UK and Ireland Fast-Track Cities


Brighton and Hove is a vibrant city on the South East coast, well known for its cosmopolitan bohemia, tolerance and inclusivity. With a young and diverse population of 290,400, the city also has large LGBTQ+ communities, which are a key characteristic of the city’s population.

In 2019 the diagnosed prevalence of HIV in Brighton and Hove was 7.8 per 1,000 population aged 15-59 years, (compared to 2.39/1,000 in England). At the end of 2018 1,867 people with HIV resident in Brighton and Hove attended NHS HIV treatment services, and 2,391 individuals currently access Brighton HIV specialist services. Over 50% of these were aged over 50; 91% were male; 92% of men acquired their infection through sex between men; the majority were white, although 50% of women with HIV were black African.

Being a part of the international Fast-Track Cities initiative since August 2017 has given us a real opportunity to learn from the rest of the world’s progress and start to disseminate our own learning and expertise to other partners.

The Toward Zero Taskforce has provided the structure for the relevant people to come together and focus on how we can intensify our HIV prevention and treatment work. The Taskforce and the three implementation groups (stigma; innovations in testing and care; and research and education) have ensured that all key players are involved, aligned, and working together towards common goals.

The city has a well-developed community and voluntary sector, which has played a significant role in achieving some of our aims, and more general stakeholder meetings have enabled community engagement across a wide number of groups. Working collaboratively and in partnership, people with HIV are actively involved in the strategic and delivery processes; drawing upon their lived experience and connectedness to the communities we aim to reach.

It is noteworthy that since becoming a Fast-Track City the data quality and ability to monitor progress has improved substantially. All the implementation groups have continued to gather and consolidate increasingly accurate data around the HIV epidemic and levels of HIV stigma, which has enabled us to plan our activities in a rapidly changing landscape.

By the end of 2019, the ‘Continuum of Care’ for Brighton and Hove was 94-99-99. But regarding the ‘4th 90’ about quality of life, there is still so much more to do.

By empowering people living with HIV to speak freely about their health, HIV will be viewed in the same way as other chronic health conditions. Tackling stigma will be at the heart of all our actions over the coming years. We’re so lucky in this city to have such a well-developed community and voluntary sector who will be key to this ongoing process.

Brighton and Hove’s Towards Zero Taskforce members are:

Dr Gillian Dean

Dr Duncan Churchill

Dr Eileen Nixon

Dr Amanda Clarke

Dr Jaime Vera

Gary Pargeter

Marc Tweed

Stephen Nicholson

For more information please visit the Martin Fisher Foundation website.