Please Read: As information on prevention, policy, and programs is rapidly evolving, these resources generally direct users to frequently updated sites, rather than single pages that can go quickly out of date. We provide evidence-based resources and encourage members to dig deeper as their mission/work requires. We are grateful to everyone as they do their best through this crisis and wish all well as we work within this extraordinary time.
Information about how COVID-19 impacts those living with HIV or hepatitis C is being gathered as the world learns more overall. These resources can get you started:
As this virus is new and we are constantly learning more, please note publication dates (in brackets) on material included here.
COVID Vaccine information from BC’s Provincial Government, including information from the Federal Government on how vaccine delivery is being prioritized.
BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS CDET Committee Statement Update on the use of
COVID-19 vaccines in Persons Living with HIV (May 2021)
People living with HIV (PLWH) aged 18 years or older should be vaccinated for COVID-19 if
they meet current Public Health criteria for priority groups and if they have no
contraindications. These vaccines are not expected to be associated with more
serious or different adverse events among PLWH or other immunocompromised individuals.
While the evidence is mixed, PLWH may be at increased risk of serious illness due to COVID19, and in the absence of contraindications should receive any of the COVID-19 vaccines
currently approved in Canada as appropriate for their age group, regardless of CD4 count
(i.e.: Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Janssen vaccines). PLWH who have CD4 counts <200 cells/µL or are not virologically suppressed should be counselled regarding the unknown efficacy and safety of the vaccines given that such subjects were not included in the vaccine licensing studies. Read complete statement
HIV status does not affect immune responses to Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine, two studies show
Two studies of immune responses to the Oxford/AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine show that the vaccine produced similar immune responses in people with or without HIV. People with HIV did not experience more side effects from the vaccine. The findings have been made available as pre-prints, which means that they have not been peer-reviewed yet. (May 2021)
BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS CDET Committee Statement on the use of COVID-19 mRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) in Persons living with HIV
See updates from May 2021 above. The BC-CfE’s Committee for Drug Evaluation and Therapy has evaluated the use of Pfizer and Moderna’s COVID-19 mRNA vaccines for Persons Living With HIV. It is the opinion of the CDET that People living with HIV (PWLH) aged 18 years or older may be vaccinated for Covid-19 if they meet current public health criteria for priority groups and if they have no contraindications. These are not live-virus vaccines and are not expected to be associated with more serious adverse events among immunocompromised individuals. (November 2020) Read complete statement
Most COVID-19 Vaccines Won’t Affect HIV Risk: Here’s What the Science Tells Us
There are four types of COVID-19 vaccines, with multiple candidates of each type in development. All of them attempt to coax the body into generating its own immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, but they do so differently. (December 2020)
First person: I’m living with HIV and have had the COVID vaccine
“I still can’t quite believe that I’ve benefited from a scientific and human achievement that, to my mind at least, ranks alongside the development of the effective HIV treatments which meant that I didn’t die a premature death in mid-1990s in my twenties but am alive and well today.” (December 2020)
Prevention and Treatment Updates
BC-CfE Interim Recommendations for COVID-19 and Persons with HIV (November 2020)
Read key points on BC-CfE HIV Treatment and prevention programs update (August 2020).
Watch a webinar on-demand from April 29, 2020: COVID-19, the BC CfE Response.
CATIE has a resource section dedicated to COVID-19 that includes webinars and reading material.
Information for people living with viral hepatitis. This resource is regularly updated by the World Hepatitis Alliance
COVID-19 and HIV: Webinar series. (2020) The International AIDS Society (IAS) has a series of webinars from April through May of 2020 on the topic of COVID-19 and HIV to discuss the pandemic and its impact on people living with HIV.
Statement on COVID-19 and Criminalization: (May 2020) “The Canadian Coalition to Reform HIV Criminalization (CCRHC) understands and supports the need for sound public health measures to limit the spread of the virus, as well as the call for solidarity to protect ourselves and others. As we are still in the early stages of an unfolding and complicated pandemic, we remind policy makers that any measures taken to respond to COVID-19, as well as their enforcement, must be proportionate, grounded in science, and in compliance with human rights.”
Rights in the time of COVID-19 — Lessons from HIV for an effective, community-led response Our response to COVID-19 must be grounded in the realities of people’s lives and focused on eliminating the barriers people face in being able to protect themselves and their communities. (UNAIDS, March 2020)
Conferences and Research
COVID-19 Conference at International AIDS 2020 Conference: The International AIDS Society (IAS) hosted a virtual COVID-19 Conference on 10-11 July 2020. The conference highlighted the latest science, policy and practice of the COVID-19 pandemic.
No Link Between HIV Status and Coronavirus Outcomes in Large US Study (reported at AIDS 2020)
“While people with HIV have higher testing rates, thus far, we have not found evidence of increased burden of positivity among those tested, nor an increased risk of severe COVID-19 outcomes by HIV status,” said researchers presenting at the International AIDS 2020 conference held virtually.
See all COVID-19 resource pages
Reviewed/ updated May 2021