Well hopefully this just means funds are being redirected from the THT to groups who are more effective in reducing transmission rates.
The THT is in a strange position as it is tasked with both prevention of HIV and defending the rights of those with HIV. Therefore they are pretty bad at prevention campaigns for fear of offending those who use theirn services after diagnosis.
The government is clearly aware that a HIV diagnosis in 2013 is on a par with a Type 1 diabetes diagnosis – a chronic but treatale illness, and that with proper treatment and care a positive diagnosis generally means a normal life expectancy.
However longterm treatment, like with diabetes is very expensive.
The THT should focus on fighting for those who are already positive to reduce stigma around the condition.
Prevention is where the money will be saved in hte long run, and sadly the THT has not shown that it is effective enough in this area – hence the spending cut.
The spending cuts are across the board with GMFA seeming to take quite a hefty cut. These cuts I believe are a result of the decision to roll over spending on the Pan London HIV Prevention Program, which has been a complete shambles in recent years.
We should be asking questions of the Commissioners of this program why they allowed duplication of work streams, why there has been no proper monitoring of the contract, & why there have been millions of £ wasted in bureaucracy, whilst prevention spending is reducing.
THT are 1 of 5 organisations who have been contracted to provide prevention services across London so I think it is unfair to single them out – the people who should be held accountable are the Commissioners at PCT level who have wasted valuable resources.
Lets hope the London Councils now get their act together quickly & start to Commission well targeted & meaningful services across London.
The London Councils are suggesting a similar Pan London approach which on the surface seems wise to have an over-arching plan, but I think groups of Local Councils should work together & commission 3 maybe 4 locally targeted contracts to reflect the broad populations & HIV prevalence in the neighboring areas.
This will possibly allow smaller service providers to bid for contracts & we may as a result get more variety & better targeting of resources.
Of course there is a danger to this in that private firms such as Virgin Healthcare, Serco, & any “qualified provider” can bid for contracts & possibly undercut the charitable organisations, who I believe are better placed to undertake good quality local prevention initiatives.
This is both an opportunity & a potential threat to HIV Prevention services going forward – we must hold the Local Town Halls to account on their spending plans for Public Health & in-particular HIV prevention spending which is not ring fenced.
”Targetted and meaningful” services aimed at prevention.
What does that mean in practical terms?
I’d love to hear some practical plans from the THT and the other groups.
Something along the lines of Íf you give us this much money then within 2 years the infection rates will have reduced by 25% because we hill have done a, b and c”.
I never hear anythig like that – and that’s simply not good enough when their main task is prevention.
You make a good point about how these contracts are managed & monitored – again citing the Pan London Programme this has been a shambles for up to maybe 4 yrs or so. I agree that where contracts are let to service providers they must deliver on outcomes, which is something that seems not to have been focused on for many many years.
Targeted to me means identifying & working with MSM who are most at risk of infection – this means better collaboration with GU clinics & better 1 to 1 counselling on behavior change. Some GU clinics are very good at offering safer sex counselling & if correctly targeted can help prevent new infections. We need to get smarter about the testing message & often we are just testing the “worried well” & missing out the 20% of individuals who are regularly having risky sex & greatly adding to new HIV infections.
PACE, GMFA, GMI Partnership, THT have all have been contracted to provide prevention services for London, they must all be held to account.
” there is a danger to this in that private firms such as Virgin Healthcare, Serco, & any “qualified provider” can bid for contracts & possibly undercut the charitable organisations, who I believe are better placed to undertake good quality local prevention initiatives.”
Personally I’d welcome seeing the efforts of any parties outside of the HIV sector to see how they would handle HIV prevention.
They could not do a worse job in one attempt than the sector combined has managed to do over the past 20 years.
You give the impression that there are five separate charities handling HIV prevention:- the truth is that most of them come under the CHAPs partnership, an incestuous consortium of charities that collude together to ensure that all HIV policy, including prevention, is driven by one approach that is ultimately dictated by THT.
So bring it on local councils, Virgin, Serco et al and all comers:- let’s see what you all have to give.
We’ve nothing to lose!
Before you start spouting off Samuel, take some time to acquire the necessary information:
1. This is about the Pan London HIV Prevention Programme & has nothing to do with the CHAPS Programme; The CHAPS programme has been superseded by HIV Prevention England.
2. PLHPP is a programme commissioned & paid for by the majority of London PCT’s (as they were) since 2008, for 3 distinct groups – MSM, African Community & people living with HIV;
3. Five charities were given contracts, namely PACE, GMFA, GMI Partnership, NAM & THT.
4. The contracts were with K&C PCT who frankly made a complete hash of the task since 2008 – millions wasted in NHS bureaucracy
As I have suggested on so many occasions, you have little grasp of the situation & peddle utter tripe that bears no relation to the facts that are available to you, should you wish to research your argument. You have an ideology to discredit THT & other HIV charities because of your obvious obsession & irrational fear of contracting HIV!
And being a good little Tory boy I can see that you are quite happy to jump to the tune of Cameron & Osborne when it comes to the commercialisation of the Sexual Health Services (& NHS) – good for you, but don’t bleat when you are forced to go to Tesco or Asda for your HIV & GU screening in the future………….that said you must be rubbing your hands with glee!
…or rather DID come under the CHAPS partnership until very recently:- disbanded and rebranded as “HIV Prevention England”.
Interesting to see GMFA left out in the cold from the new lineup (http://www.chapsonline.org.uk now links through to http://www.hivpreventionengland.org.uk/), which rather puts Matthew Hodson’s “poor me” lamentations earlier this week into some perspective.
Haven’t you noticed anything at all from all this, W6?
No outpourings of grief or rallying calls from gay men to come to their aid.
THT and GMFA have virtually zero sympathy from those they betrayed on a mass scale and are reaping what they’ve long sewn.
Indeed, you seem to be their sole apologist, prepared to defend till the bitter end come what may.
What gay men SHOULD be demanding, above all else, is a top down investigation, accountability for their duplicity, for heads to roll and those brought to book and publicly shamed, jailed even, for complicitly fuelling the spread of HIV among us.
Trust you to obsess on tiny details, W6:- yes, CHAPs disbanded and is effectively rebranded as their old site now links into http://www.hivpreventionengland.org.uk/
Interesting to see GMFA left out in the cold from the new lineup, which rather puts Matthew Hodson’s “poor me” lamentations earlier this week into some perspective.
What gay men SHOULD be demanding, above all else, is a top down investigation, accountability for their duplicity, for heads to roll and those brought to book and publicly shamed, jailed even, for complicitly fuelling the spread of HIV among gay men.
Oh………………….you are capable of research when it suits, fancy that! Sadly you are confusing issues (as usual) The funding cuts that Matthew has discussed are the Pan London cuts, nothing to do with HIV Prevention England they are very separate programmes.
London Councils have agreed to de-fund certain parts of the Pan London Programme & roll over the rest of the contract until such times that they have come up with a strategy; so for the next 12 months I suggest we are very unlikely to see any meaningful spending on HIV prevention across London; lets hope they get the commissioning intentions right this time!
For someone who has allegedly has a keen interest in HIV prevention you really are very ill informed, but then so are most gay men, they simply are not very interested in what is happening around them, but will probably shout loud when all the services that were there have been privatised – at least I am doing my bit to highlight what is going on.
You do make me laugh Samuel – only the other day you were suggesting that GMFA had the backing of the grassroots gay community, yet within 24 hours you were backpedaling (as I predicted) because they are running a course on S&M / bondage.
As I say you blow with the wind to suit the prevailing argument at the time so you can appear to be in-tune with the consensus opinion. As I said it is time you nailed your balls to the mast, but you don’t have any! You have no consistency of argument & rely heavily on rhetoric & bull$hit most of the time & when you do provide reference points you cherry pick with great accuracy to suit your point.
Do you really think I agree 100% with the policies THT, GMFA et al have when it comes to HIV? My views are very similar in some respects & differ in many areas – the point I am making here is that I look at the wider view & commit to support organisations that in my view do a pretty good job, you on the other hand just criticise & do nothing!
When I worked in retail I was told “retail is all about detail” – I wonder how you manage as a retail manager when here on PN you consistently are grabbing headlines but can never ever provide any substance or detail!
HIV Prevention England is a very different organisation to the CHAPS partnership, so I wonder who you are going to pin the blame on when it comes to National HIV Prevention in the future – no doubt THT will continue to be your target, but this is a collaboration & at the end of the day the DoH awarded the contract despite there being other players in the running. Ultimately it is the DoH who are responsible for ensuring the contract terms are fulfilled & HPE will be measured on this criteria
It is all too easy to point the finger at your favorite punch bags, ultimately it is Gov you should be holding to account – you are always going on about your hard earned taxes! Do something about it instead of moaning & berating those of us who are interested & engaged
I’m not singling the THT out in particular but over the past few years there seems to have been a clear conflict of interest between their prevention work and their advocacy work.
Infection rates are rising.
While a positive diagnosis is not a death sentence any longer (it is now a a diagnosis of a lifelong, chronic illness with normal life expectancy), it means that unless infection rates are reduced then te government will be spending billions in treatment and care over the next decades.
I don’t see why funding should continue to groups who are failing to reduce infection rates.
How does this differ from http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2011/03/23/london-hiv-groups-suffer-43-per-cent-cut-in-nhs-funding/ ?
Thanks for posting these links factsandfigures:-
PN headline, March 2011:-
“London HIV groups say funding cuts will lead to more infections”
Of course they were going to say that:- all they think about is their funding – never how to use that funding to best effect, nor to work to targets for cutting HIV rates.
Did the HIV sector really think this gravy train would never hit the buffers or come off the rails eventually?
There are demonstrable examples how many HIV campaigns past and present have served to incentivise gay men to bareback:- early 2000s campaigns switched the emphasis away from a safe sex/condoms always approach to a safer sex (ie condomless)/risk minimisation approach, while current campaigns – such as THT’s “Know Your Status – seemingly deliberately employ NLP techniques to reinforce the inevitability of contracting HIV.
In this respect lives should be SAVED so long as the safe/r message isn’t similarly insidiously subverted and inverted by newcomers.
The absurdity of a charity that has monopolised the provision of HIV services in the UK also constantly being funded millions to prevent the virus’ spread has never been addressed, despite the numerous conflicts of interest this presents.
As service providers THT was obliged to not stigmatise their HIV clients in any way during the course of their work:- a policy which, when applied to HIV prevention education and prevention campaigns has proven disastrous as the same touchy-feely approach has served only to lessen, even trivialise, the impact of the HIV message to the point where they long ago stopped fulfilling their remit to provide compelling enough reasons to deter gay men from engaging in risky behaviours.
Yes, at the end of the day it IS our responsibility to wrap up for penetrative sex, but it was THT’s remit to reinforce the reasons WHY and get a grip on the infection rate.
And in a sufficient enough tone to make us all sit up and take notice.
“with proper treatment and care a positive diagnosis generally means a normal life expectancy.”
Hi SteveC, you’re mostly bang on the money but this is an extremely generalised and misleading statement:- and just the sort of thing that does HIV prevention a lot of damage.
The HIV sector began making these kind of rash, bold statements a few years back and were roundly condemned by just about everyone and forced to stop making them as they were clearly acting as in incentive for more and more gay men to start barebacking.
The truth is that HIV itself and the cumulatively toxic treatments will affect different people in different ways and no one knows the effect they will have on the next person.
HIV remains a lottery and a loaded gun in that respect, and while positive people should be advised to plan for the longterm, it is highly irresponsible, even negligent, to refer to “normal lifespans” when such an unproven claim will only send a green light to some to abandon condoms.
………………says the HIV expert who has consistently demonstrated not to have a clue about anything related to HIV prevention, testing, treatment & care here in the UK; but prefers to cherry pick very old quotes, data & news articles to prove his particular ideology.
Samuel you have admitted you know nothing about the technical detail when it comes to HIV so you certainly are not best placed to make the comments above. The sad thing is there is a wealth of information on the net & if you were really interested in the subject matter you could research & attempt to hold individuals like me to account – I myself have provided enough information for you to easily pass a GCSE in HIV if there was such a subject, yet you only take on board information that has some personal interest, rather than the wider interest you claim to have for gay men.
What you don’t know you make up; you are deluded if you think you speak for the majority of gay men – you ain’t got a clue!
“Therefore they are pretty bad at prevention campaigns for fear of offending those who use theirn services after diagnosis”
I have to say I think this is a well worn myth amongst HIV negative gay men.
As a positive gay men I only become offended by individuals & organisations who perpetuate out of date information, myths & mis-represent how the advances in HIV care & treatment have developed in the last 10 yrs.
I am always keen to correct such poor information but often I am often shouted down here on PN.
Wel as a negative gay man with type 1 diabetes I also get offended by individuals and organisations who perpetuate out of date information, myths and misrepresent how the advances in HIV care & treatment have developed in the last 10 years – organisations like THT seem to be unable to accept the fact that in 2013 a positive diagnosis is no longer a death sentence. A HIV diagnosis in 2013 is no worse than a diabetes diagnosis. The only difference is the stigma attached. And in practical terms the treatment of HIV is FAR easier than the treatment of Type 1 diabetes.
Groups like the THT seem to be stuck in the 1990 plague mindset.
If they have been tasked with reducing infection rates and they are failing to reduce the rates, then I think cutting their funding is only reasonable.
What many fail to realise is that THT are not funded just for the sake of it – they have to bid for contracts; often the detail of these contracts are not up to the job & are not designed in a way to make it easy for them to be monitored on outcomes.
If a PCT has in the past contracted work to THT to provide a local campaign that encourages HIV testing then that is what THT will do, no more & no less – said PCT might also make demands on how descriptive or graphic said campaign should be – as I have said before THT & others often have their hands tied by the terms of the contract. We need to start with Gov departments & follow the trail from there, not the other way around in my view.
Times are changing, maybe the Local Authorities will get the commissioning & monitoring process right & open up the prevention service market – we will have to see!
“What many fail to realise is that THT are not funded just for the sake of it – they have to bid for contracts…”
Everyone with any sense knows that the system has long been rigged in THT’s favour.
It’s always been a foregone conclusion that HIV prevention contracts go to THT because the government knows it will follow their dictates and guidelines to the letter:- just as any quango will do to maintain the steady flow of funding (well, till now that is, it seems).
Pay attention W6, the clue as to THT’s oath of establishment allegiance is in the “Sir” that prefixes “Nick Partridge”.
All I would say to you Samuel is provide the proof to back up these claims. Once again you are verging on another of your favorite areas – collusion & conspiracy. Before you peddle your usual tripe of collusion between GSK, Partridge & THT (which is very old news that has never been proven, only in the minds of the conspiracy theorists like you) do provide the references to your evidence so we can all make an informed opinion.
Provide the proof to say that THT is a corrupt organisation & is colluding with Gov to get an unfair advantage to win HIV / Sexual Health contracts – these are very serious allegations & if they exist you must uncover them – it is in the public interest!
Tell me W6_bloke – what would YOU suggest in practical terms to reduce infection rates?
The THT and the other groups’ current campaigns are failing – no-one can dispute this.
Yet I never hear concrete plans for reduction of infection from groups like GMFA or THT.
All we seem to hear from them is ‘Don’t reduce our funding please.
The practical steps I would like to see are as follows:
1.Better promotion on the benefits of regular HIV testing;
2. Identifying early infection by promoting the 3 main symptoms Rash, Sore Throat & Fever, & linking this to early testing.
3. Providing better information on condom usage, limitations;
4. A review of the risk of oral sex during primary HIV infection
5. A return to targeted harm reduction strategies for those most at risk (not everyone will ever be convinced to consistently use condoms)
6. A properly funded National TV, Radio & large media advertising campaign funded by the DoH aimed at everyone not just MSM
That would be my starting manifesto!
If commentators are going to mark me down on this particular point of what I would like to see developed, perhaps they can put forward their own ideas of what could be effective prevention measures – its all too easy to be critical but what are your alternatives? This might actually develop some interesting debate, rather then the usual THT et al bashing seen on these comments pages.
I note there is much less interest in the NAT article about the cure study; so I make the assumption that many PN readers tend to believe overblown claptrap peddled by a few THT critics rather than find out for themselves what the true state of play is!
For an important subject area I am always disappointed by the negative points of view I read about THT (other HIV charities), the NHS & the great advances we have seen in HIV care & treatment – is it any wonder that most +ve people are not able to be “out” about their status, which would go a long way to reducing the myths & stigma attached to HIV
“If commentators are going to mark me down on this particular point…”
Of course you being the grand master at marking people down, W6 (vis a viz the two red arrows that miraculously appear alongside each of my HIV-related posts without fail within seconds of me sending).
If you can’t take the medicine, W6, then stop being a whiny hypocrite by dishing it out!
And yet another Samuel trait – conspiracy theory, we only have to wait for the Pharma Co’s to be mentioned & we have the hatrick Samuel, lets see how long it takes you to shoe horn in some mention of the Pharma Co’s.
Where are your ideas Samuel………………….oh of course you don’t have any!
I refer to http://www.northwestlondon.nhs.uk/publications/?category=1669-HIV-d
Yawn yawn yawn – iof you actually communicated in plain English that posting could have been one small sentence. We all know your views on the above, we hear them time & time again, the same old clap trap – never anything new to add to the argument, never anything that is well researched & actually has anything to do with the story at hand.
As you have declined to provide any guidance on what you want to see, I will do it for you:
1. HIV prevention, long-term condition management & clinical services should be privatised;
2. All prevention / sexual health work should be outsourced to private contractors to make a profit on
3. You believe that the Gov are spending enough on prevention & have a clear strategy in place
4. You believe prevention should not be evidence based, preferring to rely on shock tactics
5. Testing does not provide any preventative benefits, neither does treatment;
6. Gay men must be scared into using condoms consistently
THT have been making redundancies in all directions to cope with funding cuts – expect one – Their Fifth Floor – ie: their Directors – The Organisation still has two massive salaries going to two chief executives at Terrence Higgins Trust – Make one redundant and re-direct the salary saving into services! Easy Peesy.
now pause and wait for their PA to rant about this comment
We need to stop taking the THT so seriously.
If infection rates are rising then they are failing in their jobs.
Perhaps it’s time to move prevention campaigns to groups who are not stuck in a 1990 plague mindset.
The money and services given to the HIV sector is massive compared to other chronic, lifelong illnesses.
THT are effectively these days a private operator bidding for NHS contracts, and using money raised under the banner of”charity” to enable them to undercut the market and win more work. Donors to THT thus indirectly fund the NHS.
The model should work the other way: profits earned on NHS contracts channelled into HIV prevention, research and care.
I am not aware of any of that.
Can you elaborate?
If it is true then I would think that all their funding should be stopped.
Perhaps you can provide the evidence to support this very bold statement – THT are contracted to provide part of the National Chlamydia screening programme & HIV community testing services as part of their Clinical / Sexual Health service provision – is this not an important part of the role THT has as a National HIV / Sexual Health Charity?
If the former PCT’s have decided to award contracts to THT why is this so wrong – they certainly should not be making a profit on such contracts as you suggest Stodge. Perhaps you would prefer companies like Virgin Healthcare to make huge profits out of such contracts at the expense of quality of service – I guess it depends on your politics!
THT also received £500,000 funding in recent years to counsel 10 year olds about their sexual health.
How the hell did THAT happen?!?!
No wonder they have lost the plot over gay men’s HIV prevention when they displayed such rampant greed by evolving from a gay men’s HIV charity to a sexual heath charity that greedily elbows all other competition out of the way in pursuit of all related funding going, so as to maintain their 5th floor in luxury.
If we were accurately to define THT’s priorities today, it could be argued that it is a charity that provides services to, and defends the rights of, African asylum seekers.
Gay men long ceased being their number one priority:- that they even still use Terrence Higgins’ name is a technical reach of trading standards.
Terry himself must be looking down on all of this from the skies above with abject horror.
This is the crux of the matter with you Samuel – HIV in your mind only affects gay men, so all services must be solely provided for gay men – I think you will find that in order for many charities to survive in the UK they have to expand their remit.
Now we can debate if there should be a stand alone HIV charity for gay men – there used to be one GMFA, but in recent years they have had to expand & develop their service offering. In this time of equality why should gay men only benefit from organisations such as THT, GMFA? We know that MSM are at greater risk yet I have plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest they are tired by the link that says being gay = being HIV+ve – this is all about stigma which you are happy to perpetuate!
The SRE contracts have been awarded fairly I would suggest by either Local Authorities of the DoE, you may not agree with this but it is perfectly legitimate in my view – the quality of information will be of a high standard & delivered in a sensitive way.
“… in recent years they have had to expand & develop their service offering…”
This is complete and utter bull W6, as well you know.
THT was an HIV charity set up by gay men for gay men.
Nick Partridge was but a lowly back room boy in the 1980s when gay men came together out of a common need to do what they could to prevent the onward transmission of HIV while tending to the needs of those with the virus, who were in those days dropping like flies.
It wasn’t till Partridge was mysteriously elevated from the post room to chief exec that pharma’s tentacles started to influence the Trust’s policies, it allowed itself to become politicised, and began to see itself as a Jack of all trades regarding sexual health:- albeit a master of none.
If it had remained single-mindedly focused on its original brief and not allowed greed and profit dictate its policy by branching into multitude aforementioned areas, gay men today would largely be sexually responsible and empowered.
As always you have missed the point – THT was originally set up by gay men because the virus was initially mainly seen in that particular population group – anyone who witnessed the fear & uncertainty at those times will tell you that THT helped anyone who happened to be HIV positive; IDU’s, those who contracted the virus through blood products, children born with HIV, but at that time the majority of the work was amongst gay men.
THT is still true to the principle that it aims to promote good sexual health to ALL & continues to work with the most at risk groups, both in terms of prevention & long term condition management. The epidemiology of HIV has changed significantly over the past 30 years & THT has reflected this in its service provision & naturally has widened it’s remit.
I suspect you will continue to be frustrated by this situation because at the heart of your argument is your belief that HIV only has an impact on gay men, which is simply not the case.
I think you are mistaken about the funding that goes towards long term condition management in terms of HIV – THT were funded to the tune of £13million last year, this covers Prevention spending, Long Term Condition Management & the Clinical services (including I believe the SRE contracts they hold) – this is hardly huge beer is it?
The money that is spent on cancer in the UK is massive, I am sure like HIV Diabetes is probably very under funded – take some time to look at the various charities on the Charity Commission Website
Of course you conveniently omit the other nigh on £10 million or so THT accumulates annually from its many fund raising activities, not to mention its portfolio of prime central London real estate it invested in over the years and has made a killing from – all from money bequeathed it by estates and dowries to be used in times of need.
Such as when it suffers a funding cut!
So, can we see the THT cashing in some of its assets to fill in the shortfall here and to show it isn’t interested in HIV prevention funding only when its other people’s money it can waste and fritter away with impunity on useless campaigns?
Nope, thought not.
Here we go – the usual from Samuel, if you took the time to read the audited accounts you would know that charitable giving donations were in the region of £4.5million & you would also know that property was sold in 2011 which generated around £760,000 in profit once all the loans & costs were paid.
As you well know many donations to THT have restrictions imposed upon them as to what they can be used for, some are in the form of investments which generate revenues which can then be used by the Trust, but the capital or property has to remain unchanged.
THT are not suggesting here that they have had their funding cut by the Pan London Project probably because their contract to provide “mass media” & some group work was not extensive. I suspect the real losers are GMFA & NAM which.
This Pan London Programme has been in disarray for a long time the Kensington & Chelsea PCT who were the commissioning body responsible for this work on behalf of London have failed miserably!
Obviously the redundancy pay wasn’t enough for you eh JD (sour grapes maybe)? Let’s face facts here the Directors salaries at THT are very much in line with their level of responsibility – not one of them earms over £90k whereas the Asst Director of Housing in Hammersmith gets paid £130K to tear up the housing allocation policy, effectively putting an end to Social Housing provision in the Borough.
And before I am accused of being a THT employee, PA or schill _ I am none of these (yes I’ve heard them all before) it seems to me that some commentators here on PN seem very removed from the realities of the situation when it comes to charity funding, how the Gov is ducking it’s responsibilities with regard to HIV & Sexual Health & are not aware of the wasteful bureaucracy that short term commissioning creates & the salami slicing of an ever smaller pot of money to prevent meaningful prevention strategies being developed!
If people are going to engage in immoral fornication and deviance (homosexual males are especially promiscuous and 50 times more likely to have the AIDS plague) then why should they have any funding at all?
There isn’t a fund for victims of dangerous sports that go wrong or any other self inflicted avoidable effects of stupid selfish actions.
Learn morals and realize that abstinence until monogamous male -female marriage is the cure.
Most paedophiles realize their twisted desires are immoral and never go on to actually abuse. This shows that self control can overcome deviance.
Good point, homosexual people who have sex with people of the same sex, need help to see how they are hurting themselves in body, mind and spirit.
“We need to see a strengthening of high impact HIV prevention work for those most at risk…”
Weasel words as always from “Sir” Nick, and too little far, far too late.
Finally, a quarter of a century of willful failure has been met with a cut to your funding.
You provided near zero value for money from the tens of millions of pounds of tax payers’ hard-earned cash your charity greedily hoovered up over the years, and the burden you have inflicted on the tax payer due to the record number of HIV infections occurring on your watch will soon top £1 billion annually in HIV treatments and service running costs.
But like Sir David Nicholson of the NHS no doubt you will also insist on clinging on till the bitter end, continuing to be rewarded for your abject failures to the tune of a £90,000-plus salary and a gold-plated pension.
Or will you – finally – do the decent thing for once, Sir Nick?
Can we be very clear the HIV treatment cost are nowhere near a billion £. The annual net cost of a course of HIV treatment is around £9k as year.
Given there are approximately 60,000 individuals receiving treatment each year that is an annual cost of £540,000 per annum. Yes we have to add the clinic / consultant infrastructure cost in to that, but the estimates of treatment costs are wildly exaggerated for effect!
Lets also be clear an individual presenting with advanced HIV infection is likely to cost the NHS somewhere in the region of £250k in intensive treatment, requiring in patient stays, multidisciplinary Consultant input & a range of other on-going services.
It is right to look at the cost but lets be realistic & make the Gov invest upfront in prevention funding which will save treatment costs in future years.
“It is right to look at the cost but lets be realistic & make the Gov invest upfront in prevention funding which will save treatment costs in future years”
Why should my tax fund the entirely avoidable effects of yours or anyone’s deviance?
W6 employs the same smoke and mirror tactics beloved of THT and their discredited CHAPs partner Sigma Research, who for years skewed and misrepresented the Gay Men’s Sex Survey results so as to present the THT in a false light, thereby justifying it being the recipient of successive HIV budgets:- fraud, basically.
W6 conveniently omits social care from the annual cost of treating HIV positive people which, when added to the cost of treatments and services, is indeed approaching £1bn:-
“Every HIV infection which is prevented saves between £280-360,000 in life time treatment costs. Life time treatment costs cost £1 billion per annum. Some of these could be avoided, through increased focused on prevention as a tool to reduce HIV transmission.”
I have clearly stated my position in relation to the cost of “treatment” as it stands today – & to add further clarity when I say “treatment” I am referring to the cost of drug treatment. I was also very clear that the infrastructure cost of consultants & clinics was not part of my costing.
You on the other hand have deliberately chosen to quote “projected costs” – you are not comparing like with like, which is your attempt at smoke & mirrors. At the end of the day Samuel you consistently rely on overblown statements & cherry pick from your favorite sources of information. That said the ref points seems to confer all that I say in relation to HIV, to coin your well worn phrase “you have been hoisted by your own petard” or in plain English you scored a home goal! Well done…….
These cuts also mean the the patient information booklets distributed by NAM (aidsmap) to clinics and organisations across the capital are now at risk – the free booklet scheme (aidsmap.com/fbs), as well as NAM as a whole, an important information resource could be about to go.
If you can show how these resources have been value for money for the tax payer, Glen, then I will gladly chain myself to the 10 Downing Street railings.
Why shouldn’t they be cut if the confusingly befuddled PC terminology they utilise can sometimes pose as much as an incentive to engage in the risky behaviours they are intended to prevent?
NAM is a very well respected organisation & a great source of balanced information relating to HIV, I really hope that the new commissioning arrangements includes that important work that NAM does; sadly there are many that will not recognise or want to understand the important role that up to date, accurate & well balanced information has on prevention of onward HIV transmissions.
NAM is the only charity that I support via monetary donations – it is a vital resource in my view!
“The government is clearly aware that a HIV diagnosis in 2013 is on a par with a Type 1 diabetes diagnosis – a chronic but treata[b]le illness”
Saying that betrays your ignorance of both illnesses.
But it’s absolutely true.
I am type 1 diabetic so don’t try to pretend I don’t know what I am talking about. The treatment for diabetes is far more intrusive than HIV treatment – 4 bloodtests and 4 injections on a daily basis; constant monitoring of food, risk of collapsing into a coma; nasty complications like blindness, amputation; heart disease if control is not strict.
Both are chronic lifelong illnesses that require strict controls.
Why the HIV sector is so adamant in pretending that HIV is is some special category of chronic illness is beyond me.
Probably to protect its funding.
And they are failing miserablty at reducing infection rates.
Hi SteveC, the problem has been previously when the HIV sector participated in declassifying HIV to a “manageable condition with a normal, heathy lifespan” which invoked the fury of many as that statement clearly played a role in incentivising greater numbers of gay men to take reckless risks.
It was then reclassified as a “chronic, lifelong illness” as you say, but they have been rightly coy about inferring to a “normal lifespan” as a generalised term because that isn’t strictly true across the board.
Some on treatments don’t respond as well as others and modern treatments have not been around long enough to know exactly what the future holds.
So, to minimise the impact of the threat still posed by HIV infection it is perhaps best not to reinforce messages about “normal lifespans” that can compel some to abandon condoms, and focus instead on the many extra years of life that these treatments DO confer.
A finely trodden balance at this time should be struck between the two.
Maybe a stupid point to make but what happened to all the TV advertising I remember so well as a child? Surely going back to advertising condoms and the importance of using them would be a great reminder?
Perhaps this is a good sign. I am not familiar with HIV Education in Europe, but my contention is that Gay health organizations have been passive and lax in their approach to HIV since the late 90s. I think we need a radically new and targeted approach to HIV.
book out soon:EverythingAGayManNeeds.com website
As this thread once again is dying of strangulation by the usual W6 & Samuel side show I am struck that many have missed the real point here – take out who does what in terms of the service providers, HIV prevention services & interventions in London for the next year or so will be very limited if non existent, how is that ever going to be a good thing?
The Gov agencies are making huge cuts & gay men simply roll over, stay silent & accept the situation; where is the activism, where is the interest from gay men?
I am always very saddened by the lack of interest there is amongst the very group who continue to be the most at risk of contracting HIV. 30 yrs have passed & as a population group MSM are still not willing to look after their sexual health to the best of their ability
No amount of £ will replace personal responsibility to get clued up on HIV & take the necessary steps to protect each other, it really is very concerning particularly as the information is readily available
Samuel – as I have previously mentioned you will continue to be frustrated by prevention methods in the future. Your views are totally at odds with an evidence based / outcomes approach.
Condoms contain HIV, they do not reduce the level of virus within a population group.
We will see more & more emphasis on targeted testing, & possibly very early treatment if recent evidence based developments can be reliably replicated in some sort of randomised control trial.
Treatment as prevention is going to have an impact, as it is proven to be cost effective & more importantly significantly reduces the level of virus within the population.
Your views are swimming against a tide of ever increasing evidence that says yes we must still promote condom use, but if we are serious about eradication in the medium term treatment technologies will have to be increasingly utilized.
I suspect you will sadly always be living in fear of contracting HIV because of your entrenched point of view!
W6 aptly describes his persistent ambushing of HIV threads on PN as “strangulation” (actually, not a bad word in the circumstances).
His problem posting here, as he’s discovered, is that he expects to be able to control and steer consensus around all things HIV his way:- as he does on the various other HIV forums he moderates.
He’s also set himself up as an authority on HIV treatments and has his own Twitter account, also using the W6 monicker, on which he cosies up with, and occasionally serenades, assorted HIV sector bigwigs.
Let it be said that W6 certainly knows his stuff regarding HIV treatments:- and laudably his knowledge is freely at hand to guide others through the drugs maze to ensure they’re receiving the most appropriate treatments.
BUT, and this is a very big but:- W6 maintains he’s not here to shill or troll for the HIV sector, yet he’s always here pushing the same agenda whenever an HIV thread appears, rarely if ever participating in the wider diversity of…
discussions around myriad topics like the rest of the stalwart PN cohort, of which I include myself.
And, it must be said, W6 never simply ingratiates himself into such discussions.
He stomps in hyper-ventilating every time, demanding its either his way or the highway as he bullies and cajoles fellows commentators with his HIV world view (just ask poor Eddy or Sister Mary Clarence who suffered W6′s bile in a recent mammoth HIV thread).
The point being, these HIV threads are hijacked time and again by W6 spewing endless statistics while delivering his epic, mind-already-made-up groupthink posts in his clinical drone like tone loaded with medical PC jargon and, therefore, mostly lost on the rest of us.
Well those of us who haven’t nodded off.
These threads simply aren’t the place for W6 to throw his weight around as he presumes a right to do elsewhere, nor to get high and mighty in his efforts to stymie and shut down debate…
by using PC training techniques to railroad simple comments people are making in response to the topic in question.
For example, whenever anyone dares criticise the HIV sector’s HIV prevention work, time and again he will throw the comment back on the commentator and say “How would you tackle HIV prevention?” or, absurdly, “Why don’t you do something about it?”, thereby missing the entire point that it is them, not us, who are funded to perform this work.
A constant of W6′s ambushing of PN threads is that ultimately he is a loan voice on all HIV-related topics as evidenced by the scoring system, which clearly hurts his pride as he is so used to having the final word on those HIV forums he moderates.
But moderation key here too:- W6 should understand that people are here to comment freely about matters of interest, no matter how much he may hate people’s right to free speech.
I happen to abhor failures of the HIV sector and have every right to comment about them…
without being stalked and cajoled at every turn by a slavering, foam-mouthed W6 who’s here only to shill for his agenda while trashing everyone else he does not agree with, spouting endless gibberish and balderdash in an attempt to bamboozle and dazzle us with his superior knowledge while steadfastly and consistently missing the point people are making.
Viz a vis, I point out above how THT betrayed its origins as a charity set up by gay men for gay men by expanding its scope beyond HIV to cover all areas of sexual health while catering for all with the virus.
This was a simple statement of fact, yet W6 goes out of way as usual – while using the same tired old meaningless rhetoric – to subvert what I was saying to make me look wrong:- the classic tactic of the PC disinformo shill.
So final message to W6:- these threads are for free, open discussion on a welter of topics, shilling is not welcome here, nobody’s listening any, so take your agenda and shut the door on your way out.
You seem to think you are at the head of some virtual pecking order Samuel, is your life so devoid of anything meaningful that you try to promote yourself as a keeper of the virtual world that is PN?
You claim to want to encourage free thinking & free speech, yet you are the most entrenched out of touch individual when it comes to current thinking on HIV.
I don’t have to make you look wrong, you do that yourself – the only reason you garner support in HIV related threads is because it is fashionable to be critical of THT.
You seem to think PN is like a gentleman’s debating society for you to spout utter bull$hit unchallenged – that is never going to happen as long as I have a breath in my body!
It is time you went elsewhere to peddle your malicious rhetoric as I am very sure without your unhelpful interventions we could have decent, reasoned debates about this important subject area without having to put up with your conspiracy theories & obsession with THT.
As always you duck the real issue Samuel which is one of adequate funding for HIV prevention initiatives, but as a good Tory boy you are so happy to dance to the tune of the current incumbent Gov.
From my reading of older comments pages it seems to me that you have never been challenged on your out if date views & you have never been held to account when it comes to the outrageous untruths you consistently post here.
It is high time that you were challenged & I have made I my mission to provide the balance to your overblown rhetoric, the lies you peddle & the damage you are causing to the reputation of HIV treatment & care here in the UK.
You are a disgrace & should be ashamed of the way you treat other commentators here on PN – you seem to assume you are better than those who dare question you.
For someone who claims not to use Twitter you seem to know a lot about my Twitter account, why are you so interested in my personal Twitter activity?
The one thing I can say Samuel is that I have never ever made such unpopular comments to receive 40 red arrows, & whilst I may not comment on many other topics, I often read other comments pages & I note how often you are out of step with other commentators.
For too long you have been allowed to peddle utter clap trap about HIV – you have consistently shown you have no grasp of the basics, which is truly worrying given your “interest” in the subject matter.
As for your charge of me treating other commentators badly, you should hold your head in shame about the way you treated Stu, but of course in your quest to catch him out you never ever gave a second thought to his feelings.
Whilst none of us could know the extent of his difficulties the signs were clearly there but just as have with me, you ridiculed him & hounded him – says a great deal about you as an individual when you bully people into submission.
You have tried all sorts of ways to silence me here on PN, bullying, ridiculing, discrediting my knowledge, accusing me of rigging the voting system, posting as aliases etc etc – never have you been able to prove any of your accusations & often when provided with evidence to clearly show you have been wrong have you ever had the decency to apologise in an appropriate manner.
I have never in my life had to deal with such a devious, ignorant & self absorbed, abrasive individual as you Samuel. You reap what you sow in this world; think on sunshine, you never know when you might need the help of someone with my genuine interest in HIV – even the most careful get caught out!
W6-Bloke – I admit I barely even read any of your posts on this topic, as the sheer volume of text seems specifically designed to stifle debate,
What is 100% clear is that the THT has failed miserably in its remit and if they experience funding cuts then it is no big deal.
Why continue to fund a failing group?
Succinctly said, SteveC.
You nailed it in 7 words – “THT has failed miserably in its remit” – yet W6 persistently sees fit to laboriously elaborate on this simple fact by waffling and pontificating and boring and annoying everyone senseless around the many and various interconnected intricacies that his web of endless citations and references to unblemished (honest, guv!) stats spin, as if some egotistical evangelist preaching to his brainwashed followers.
You are on the wrong forum for that nonsense, W6.
Preach to your followers on your Twitter feed and the HIV forum you police, sorry, moderate, and leave us to debate with our agenda-less PN coterie in peace.
If they can put up with your verbiage and “pity poor downtrodden me” victim spiel whenever anyone questions your authority, then more fool them I say.
What we have clearly established is that W6 is not here to debate “with” the PN cohort:- that is, to convene in reasonable discussion with others the various talking points of the day in a reasoned and controlled manner, open to all viewpoints and who says sorry when he has stepped out of line.
On no, ladies, gentlemen and in betweeners!
W6 comes to PN boards as a one-trick pony, only ever here to inflict his HIV-related agenda “at” us and woe betide anyone who steps out of line or questions W6′s “this lady’s not for turning” gospel.
That is the difference twixt he and I:- I am here to debate, I don’t come with an agenda per se.
This board is supposed to be for discussing the HIV sector’s collapse in prevention funding for reasons I have been highlighting to PN readers for many years out of genuine concern at abuses and misappropriation of taxpayers’ cash and the resultant toll on our fellow gay men.
I’m not involved with the HIV industry in any way and am not here to…
cover up for said sector’s failures:- I’m an ordinary lay person, Sammie (as my friends know me) Bass, aged 34, retail consortium manager at a West End department store who’s only claim to fame is I once came close to securing the winning bid for a Liza Minelli feather boa.
I don’t come to these boards as an agenda-driven know-it-all who pulls rank on the PN cohort and turns nasty, abusive and throws toys out of the pram when PN everyman refuses to be taken in by sleight of hand PC trickery.
And I certainly NEVER invoke the memory of recently departed and fondly remembered PN commentators as a cheap shot which, let’s face it, was way below the belt even for W6 who deserves out utmost vehement condemnation.
Perhaps W6 would in future follow GMFA head Matthew Hodson’s example:- come to these boards by all means but state your agenda in coming here, make your point clearly in a reasoned and restrained manner, then leave it to the PN cohort to discuss and return to your web of…
specialist HIV social networks that you manage to host on an unpaid full-time basis – and on which your expertise on HIV treatments can be appreciated and best applied and your staunch support of the HIV sector have more sympathetic ears – in a swift manner instead of loitering to rebuke and antagonise dissenters.
After all, how would YOU like it if outsiders without any general interest in HIV came to your Twitter feed or online forums and started throwing their weight around and laying the law down?
No, it’s time for you to stop abusing PN boards for your own interests, W6:- I am sure I must speak for everyone here when I say ENOUGH ALREADY!!
From now on, if you won’t debate in an adult manner and without putting the boot in then your agenda will immediately be flagged up and you may even start finding your own forums being infiltrated and abused by outsiders who, like your interest here on PN, is solely to log on to shill, bait and troll.
I hope I’ve made myself clear.
As clear as mud Samuel – you are fast turning into the self-appointed PN moderator; so much for freedom of speech – seems to me it is only YOU that is allowed to say what you like, no matter how offensive & threatening. As I say what goes around comes around…………………………keep digging Samuel, one day that black hole you are constructing will consume you!
I certainly know where to come looking next time my Twitter account is hacked – if I were you I would be careful what information you place in the public domain, these things have a habit of returning to haunt you!
I think a right to reply is in order, I will leave the character assassination to the end of my submission.
I think it important to provide a factually based argument – which at the end of the day that is what true debate is about, presenting & interpreting the facts in a reasonable manner & providing a reasoned argument.
I am of the opinion that it is important to be very accurate when it comes to putting information in the public domain about HIV. Factually correct information is vital if we are to reduce fear & stigma & encourage individuals to take care of their sexual health.
I have never set out to deliberately misinform, exaggerate or provide inaccurate information, in fact I would say I try to educate wherever possible, or encourage others to brush up on their HIV knowledge.
This is in stark contrast to Samuel – I can cite hundreds of examples where he posts information that is factually incorrect, particularly when it comes to HIV Testing, Treatment & of course THT.
The most shocking example I can cite is one of HIV testing – Samuel claims that the UK testing protocols are not up to the job of accurately diagnosing HIV infection, he has gone to the lengths to suggest to a friend who was diagnosed here in the UK & was on ARV treatment to get a second opinion in another Country. However well intended this may have been it is absolutely irresponsible for him to have posted such a story here on PN. It is comments like this that can be very harmful & either deter people from testing or worst perhaps start to question their own HIV diagnosis.
Newly diagnosed individuals are very vulnerable people, what they require is reassurance & correct information, not an individual like Samuel putting doubt in their mind about the accuracy of HIV testing & diagnosis here in the UK. To add insult to injury Samuel has also posted a radio podcast link which was clearly from the HIV denialist faction, this to me is yet another irresponsible act.
In another example, less serious but nevertheless intended to damage the organisation, Samuel often misquotes THT financial information – THT publish audited accounts which are available for anyone to review. In this very thread he has quoted THT as having an income from charitable giving (donations) in the region of £10million a year, whereas the true figure is around £4.5million. One has to ask why he insists on misrepresenting such basic information – the only reasonable conclusion I can come to is that he is unable to read a set of accounts correctly OR more likely, he is intent on damaging THT & inciting others in his obsession with THT (& other HIV charities).
Whilst I do not agree with everything that THT does & I have never “defended” the senior management of the organisation, I think it is reasonable to present the facts & allow others to come to their own considered opinion, We have to ask why does Samuel consistently lie about such matters?
In terms of HIV care & treatment he comes to these comment pages to deliberately scaremonger about modern drugs that ensure the majority of people living with HIV can lead a normal life & can expect to enjoy life. Of course this is not the case for everyone – those who were given the very early drugs to this day endure great suffering; I have many friends with lipodystrophy, peripheral neuropathy, diabetes & other health condition that were caused by the very early drugs.
My point has always been that anyone diagnosed in the last 10 years can expect to be given modern drugs with very few side effects; the monitoring of vital organs is such that any longer term damage because of drug toxicity is picked up very early & steps taken to deal with the problem. I have a keen interest in the welfare of my fellow +ve individuals, yet Samuel has consistently attempted to discredit my passion in this vital area of peer support & education.
The management of HIV has dramatically evolved in the past 2 decades – I believe it is absolutely disgraceful & irresponsible that an individual such as Samuel should be given free reign to continue to discredit the very fine HIV treatment & care available to us here in the UK. But he doesn’t stop there – his latest scaremongering is regarding the use of generic HIV treatments when they become available. Despite all the evidence available & given that 80% of the drugs used in the NHS are generics he insists that generic ARV’s are less effective than the branded equivalent. Why is he doing this, why is he once again making irresponsible statements that are clearly designed to scaremonger +ve individuals & suggest that we will start to receive inferior treatment.
I am not prepared to allow him to remain unchallenged & systematically discredit the care & treatment available in the UK, which is probably the best in the world – these are very important issues that I am right to highlight.
I could cite many many more examples of how Samuel has waged a war on both HIV charities & the clear advances that we see in HIV care & treatment across the World, but particularly here in the UK. It is clear to me that if we are going to drastically reduce HIV incidence in the MSM population we need more than the humble condom at our disposal – condoms work, they are pretty effective, but 30 yrs of HIV experience the world over tell us that not everyone will use condoms 100% consistently – we need to do more than just to contain the virus by using condoms alone – we need to eradicate HIV.
The spotlight is on testing & treatment at the moment – there are mixed views on when treatment should be given, but the direction of travel seems to be one of very early treatment, which as has been demonstrated by the VISCONTI cohort recently – early treatment may in some people enable them to stop taking ARV’s in the future & remain virologically suppressed.
My argument with Samuel became very personal more or less as soon as I started posting in the comments section – where he cannot develop debate based in fact he becomes highly personal, which sadly I will admit to retaliating using personal jibes & to give as much as I get.
It is difficult to deal with an individual who is clearly beset by many emotional difficulties, probably because he was bullied for being “different” when he was at school – this is where I venture into the speculation about Samuel as he regularly does about me. Sadly he comes across as a very insecure individual who harbours a high degree of paranoia & trusts no one – he is probably afraid of his own shadow. When it comes to HIV he has a very unhealthy interest in the topic, but seems unable to make rational judgements about HIV, he lives in fear of contracting the virus. He is obsessive to the point where he would rather believe conspiracy theory rather than proven scientific & clinical evidence.
Many other commentators have noticed his level of paranoia, his seemingly lack of acceptance of his sexuality, one recently suggested that Samuel is no gay at all. I find it extremely sad that he remains uncomfortable about his sexuality & he is running scared of HIV – unless he deals with these issues he will never be happy!
They often say that those who are bullied become the bullies – I believe this to be the case with Samuel; he certainly bullied Stu when he was alive & when I last checked the comment page about Stu’s untimely death he could not bring himself to post a comment as a mark of respect – so I will take no lectures from Samuel on how I treat others on these comments boards. When backed into a corner he always resorts to his cyber bullying tactics & starts attacking the individual rather than the argument the individual presents.
I can honestly say I find Samuel both deeply offensive on a personal level & irresponsible which is why I will continue to mark his card on PN
When it comes to future debates on HIV I would suggest Samuel that you make factual & relevant points that are pertinent to the news article being discussed; in doing so I am much more likely to engage with you which will develop good debate. It really is time that you moved away from your 3 main strands of argument when discussion HIV. We all know your views on THT & the Pharma Co’s so why do you continue to re-state these time & time again? The conspiracy theories are just a side show to detract from the important issues that should be discussed.
We both owe it to other PN readers to present factually based arguments – sadly I fear your paranoid ideology & mistrust of science & research will always hold you back. HIV is both a social & medical science based subject, it requires a reasonable appreciation of the facts as they stand, if you want to engage with me (& others) you need to develop your understanding of HIV to a basic level & not rely on rhetoric & hearsay!
I get what Samuel means about the hyperventilating. Get over yourself W6_bloke – oh so boring…zzz…zzz…
I couldn’t agree more Ritchie!
Is anyone even paying any attention to these desperate bleatings from a monumentally deluded, self-important ego?
Not me! :)
For heaven’s sake W6_Bloke – do you REALLY need 8 posts to make a single point.
I fully understand the hyperventilation accusation made against you.
You have an agenda, and you do NOT listen to arguements regardless of how justified they are.
If you are typical of the HIV industry then is it any wonder this industry is failing to reduce infection rates.
In fairness to W6_Bloke it does seem that Samuel B. does appear to be stretching the “truth” & over-egging the pudding……………………….
Well that’s me put on my place………..I think there comes a time when enough is enough, Samuel is more than welcome to continue his smearing campaign against THT.
As for me, it is much more rewarding to help & support others living with HIV – the only thing I would say to the “prevention critics” is that commenting here on PN will not change anything, so I guess we have all been wasting our time!
W6 finally “gets” it at last!
To even imagine any of us come here to “change” anything just shows how he misunderstands these boards, which he has used to push his agenda, bullying and insulting all comers in a vain effort to control the debate and engineer consensus.
None of us are drawn here by the same motivations:- we come to PN to catch up with the latest news of LGBT interest and to converse with similarly-minded folk in free and open debate.
So if anyone’s time has been wasted, W6, it most certainly isn’t ours!
Still, good of you to concede defeat and finally bail out:- on the plus side this will enable you to devote many hours a week to your captive and audiences elsewhere, so everyone wins!
Sincere good wishes to you:- despite the intense battles I have developed something of a soft spot for you and wish you well in your excellent advocacy work.
You’ve a big heart beneath that robust surface:- allow it to shine in all you do!
Yes you win Samuel……….. that has been your intention all along, so don’t pretend you don’t have an agenda, as clearly you do!
Please don’t insult my intelligence by wishing me well as we both know you are not sincere, as I say what goes around, comes around!
That really is it from me here on PN, the bullies abe yet again had another victory – well done!