In Manitoba, the seven STBBIs of most concern are: chlamydia, gonorrhea, syphilis, human papillomavirus (HPV), human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), hepatitis B virus (HBV) and hepatitis C virus (HCV). Chlamydia, gonorrhea and HPV are spread almost exclusively through sexual contact, HCV spreads mostly through blood (ex: through injection drug use, piercing and tattooing) and HIV, syphilis and HBV can be spread either sexually or through blood. Certain STBBIs such as syphilis and HIV can also be transmitted from mother to child during pregnancy or child birth.
A number of socio-demographic determinants contribute to the spread of STBBIs including, but not limited to: marginalization, substance use, trauma and mental health. Data have clearly shown that these determinants impact populations differently. Therefore, in addressing these issues, a particular emphasis is often placed on priority populations who are considered to be vulnerable.
The easiest way to get a sexually transmitted infection is by having unprotected sex, and using a condom or barrier is the most effective way to prevent them. Using clean needles and not sharing equipment can also greatly reduce the transmission of blood-borne pathogens, such as HIV or Hepatitis C, for those who inject drugs.
The Manitoba Sexually Transmitted and Blood-Borne Infections Strategy (2015-2019) was developed as a comprehensive and collaborative approach to address STBBIs in Manitoba.
More information on supports and resources relating to sexually transmitted and blood-borne infections (STBBIs) please see the links below: