National Sexual Health Strategy 2015-2020

Ireland’s first National Sexual Health Strategy 2015-2020 was published by the Department of Health in October 2015.  Launched by the then Minister for Health, Leo Varadkar TD, it is a strategic framework to address the sexual health and wellbeing of the Irish population and to reduce negative sexual health outcomes.  The three key goals of the strategy are: 1) to ensure that everyone has access to appropriate sexual health education and information; 2) to ensure that high quality sexual health services are available and affordable; 3) to ensure that good quality data is available to guide the service.

HIV Ireland participated in the development of the strategy from 2012 to 2014 and was a member of the Education and Prevention Working Group.

The HSE Sexual Health and Crisis Pregnancy Programme (SHCPP) is responsible for leading the implementation of the majority of actions within this Strategy, and the Health and Wellbeing Programme in the Department of Health is responsible for monitoring the implementation of the Strategy and reporting to the Minister for Health on its progress.

HIV Ireland is the only voluntary sector representative on the HSE National Implementation Group of the National Sexual Health Strategy.  We also actively participate in, and support, the HSE National Advisory Group, the HSE National Communications Working Group, the HSE Migrant Communications Working Group, and the HSE gbMSM Health Committee.

In the run-up to the General Election 2020, HIV Ireland published a HIV Manifesto calling on the next Government to deliver on key policy and strategic commitments to end new HIV transmissions, combat stigma, and improve services for people living with HIV.  The HIV Manifesto includes a call to “Develop and deliver a new National Sexual Health Strategy” for Ireland and include measures to improve access to HIV and sexual health services, and commitments to reach global targets for the reduction of HIV transmission.  Increased investment at the intersection of existing strategic priorities on sexual health, mental health and addiction should also be made.

Previous National HIV and AIDS Strategies