ENDING HIV

COVID-19 Information, Updates & Resources

As of 11:59pm Tuesday 07 September all of Aotearoa New Zealand is at Alert Level 2 - with Auckland remaining in Alert Level 3.

 

This page is where we will host all relevant updates about how COVID-19 is affecting our services and offices. Last updated - Wednesday 08 September 2021. 


 

Testing and Condom services

 

Due to the COVID-19 crisis and alert level restrictions, there are changes across a number of services:

  • Aotearoa is at COVID-19 Alert Level 2 - Our Āwhina and Te Toḵa centres are open for booked appointments.
    • Please DON'T attend your appointment if you are experiencing any cold or flu symptoms - contact our team to help you change your booking.
    • Please wear a mask, our staff will be wearing them for your safety too
    • You will need to check in for COVID-19 contact tracing - QR codes for scanning in and paper check-in sheets, for those without devices, will be available.

  • Auckland is at COVID-19 Alert Level 3 - Our Burnett Centre is closed.
    • You can still order an HIV self-test that you can do at home - please bear in mind COVID-19 may affect delivery times.
    • Sexual health clinics will have different operating capacities depending on where in the country you are - please call or email ahead to discuss your situation and how you can access services.
    • You can also contact your local GP / family doctor to request HIV or STI testing, if you have any concerns. It's still a good idea to call or email ahead.
  • Condom distribution
    • We can still send condoms out during all alert levels
    • Please test for HIV and other STIs before bursting your bubbles for sex in level 2, this will break the chain of transmission for more than one epidemic and keep our communities safer
    • Please note, you shouldn't be having sex outside of your bubbles at levels 3 & 4, sorry Auckland. You can still get tested during this time though, to know your status and be ready once lockdown lifts 

 

 

Counselling & Mental Health

Aotearoa is at COVID-19 Alert Level 2 with Auckland remaining at level 3 - Our counselling services will remain virtual at this time.

NZAF will continue to offer counselling services. Remote counselling services - our remote sessions can be held via phone or video. Head to the counselling booking form to get in touch.

Also, check out this article for advice on how to look after your anxiety during this time.

 

 

Offices

Aotearoa is at COVID-19 Alert Level 2 - Our Āwhina and Te Toḵa centres are open for booked appointments. Auckland remains at Alert Level 3 - our national office and Burnett Centre are closed.

 

 

COVID-19 and people living with HIV

Over at NZAF they also monitoring the latest understandings and medical advice on how COVID-19 might affect people living with HIV - read more here.

 

 

 

Sex

 

As of 11:59pm Tuesday 22 September all of Aotearoa New Zealand is at Alert Level 2 - with Auckland remaining in Alert Level 3.

  • Please test for HIV and other STIs before bursting your bubbles for sex in level 2, this will break the chain of transmission for more than one epidemic and keep our communities safer.
  • As Auckland is still at level 4, no one should be having sex outside of their bubbles at this time. 

While COVID-19 isn't a sexually transmitted infection, being in close personal contact with another person is one of the highest risk behaviours for this virus. When you add in shared bodily fluids, it's even higher risk and isn't recommended during Alert Levels 3 & 4. 

Also, if you can still keep things digital and want advice - read our blogs Top Tips For Tasteful Nudes and Love In The Time of COVID-19 for how to get your rocks off and still maintain physical distancing 

If you aren't able to follow COVID-19 safety advice and keep it in your bubble, it's super important that you are able to contact trace any sexual partners you meet - remember Bluetooth tracing doesn't require you to share your identity, at the very least turn Bluetooth on. 


It's important to test for HIV and other STIs before rejoining your sexual networks after the stricter Alert Levels.

A silver lining of the dark cloud of COVID-19 is that it presents us with an incredible opportunity to actually break the chain of transmission for other viruses - like, say, HIV! Read more here to find out what we should be doing before we're let back out into the world and the "arms" of future sexual partners.

 

 

PrEP

COVID-19 Alert Levels may impact your ability to get PrEP at this time.

  • Contact your local sexual health clinics to see if they are available for PrEP appointments - call or email ahead to discuss your situation.
  • You can also contact your local GP / family doctor to request PrEP

Note on discontinuing PrEP: For cisgender men who have sex with men, PrEP can be safely discontinued by taking the tablets for two consecutive days (48 hours) after your last condomless sex – it doesn’t matter if you take it daily or on-demand (2-1-1). If you are not a cisgender man who has sex with men, the current guidelines recommend to continue taking PrEP for 28 days since your last condomless sex before it can be discontinued. It is important to remember that HIV testing needs to be done prior to restarting PrEP. 

 

 

Staying Connected

While those of us at level 3 are in lockdown still, physical distancing doesn't need to be lonely.

Check out this blog about digital spaces for our trans and gender diverse whānau to connect with others in their community. 

If you're looking for general tips and tricks for keeping in touch and having some fun while you're at it - check out this blog about some virtual ways to socialise with your circle while we physically isolate. 

Read the blog Top Tips For Tasteful Nudes for tips for sending nudes while in lockdown. 

 

 

The NZAF network

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