Brisbane Plays Host to the World's Largest HIV Science Conference


31st Jul, 2023

Thousands of researchers have gathered in Brisbane for the world’s largest and most influential HIV sciences conference, shining a spotlight on global advances in HIV research.

Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre (BCEC) played host to more than 3,000 members of the international research community, in Brisbane last week to attend The International AIDS Society Conference on HIV Science (IAS 2023).

To mark the occasion Brisbane’s city bridges as well as the Convention Centre building were lit red on Monday to reflect the red ribbon, the universal symbol of awareness and support for people living with HIV.  

The four-day conference at the ASM Global managed BCEC, presented a global focus for Australia’s and Queensland’s world leading response to HIV.

Hosting the conference is seen as an accelerator for Australia to reach its goal of achieving the virtual elimination of HIV transmission by 2025, with Australia’s rate of decline among the best in the world.

IAS International President Professor Sharon Lewis, Director of Australia’s Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, said Australia has maintained a progressive approach to HIV since the very beginning of the pandemic.

“Australia is poised to be one of the first, if not the first, country to achieve virtual elimination of HIV,” Professor Lewin said.

The conference served to amplify the outstanding role of science in the areas of infectious diseases and viral medicine in Australia and Queensland, with scientists from the nations’ top research institutes playing an active part in the bid to secure the HIV Sciences Conference for Brisbane.

IAS 2023 also focussed its attention on the Asia-Pacific region as to the challenges and successes of the HIV response, focussing attention on the region’s most vulnerable people.

BCEC Advocate, and Conference Chair, Professor Charles Gilks, led the bid to secure the event together with ASHM (Australasian Society for HIV, Viral Hepatitis and Sexual Health Medicine) along with the team at the BCEC with strong support from the Queensland Government, through Queensland Health and Tourism and Events Queensland, Tourism Australia and Brisbane Economic Development Agency.

BCEC General Manager, Kym Guesdon said the Centre was delighted to welcome delegates to Brisbane for the International Aids Society Conference on HIV Science this week.

“This conference is one of 28 international conventions set to take place at the Centre during the 2023/24 Financial Year, and we look forward to welcoming those delegates to Brisbane and BCEC.

“BCEC actively collaborates with the scientific and medical community through its highly successful Convention Advocates Partnership. Our convention advocates, who include many eminent scientists and academics, provide us with a deep understanding of where Brisbane and Australia lead the world in critical ground-breaking scientific research.”

(HQ was in Brisbane to follow up on this conference by speaking to some of its advocates. Check back soon on our website and in the next issue #111.)

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