Data from June through August 2021 shows promising uptake of the program among key populations and includes 3 positive test results.
The I’m Ready research program’s first-ever data summary, for the program’s first quarter, is now available.
Launched in June 2021, I’m Ready invites people to download its I’m Ready, Test app to join the program, after which they can order up to three free HIV self-test kits for delivery or to be picked up at over 80 participating locations across Canada. Critically, participants are also supported to connect to care and prevention, either on their own using this website’s Care pathways, or by booking an appointment with the program’s peer navigators for support before, during or after they self-test for HIV.
The first-quarter data summary, which captures participant data from June through August 2021, highlights the following key findings:
- 14,000+ website visitors;
- 1,579 people consented and entered the study through the I’m Ready, Test app;
- 1,311 participants started the pre-test survey;
- 1,100 participants ordered 2,653 HIV self-test kits for delivery or pick up;
- 496 participants added at least one test result in the app; and
- 3 positive test results submitted, all from key populations.
Noted Dr. Sean B. Rourke, I’m Ready’s Principal Investigator, Director of REACH Nexus and Scientist with MAP Centre for Urban Health Solutions, “Collecting data in real-time is critical to understanding what is and isn’t working so we can continue to improve our program and make a difference—particularly for key populations who are most affected by health inequities.”
“Key populations” are those communities who are disproportionately affected by HIV in Canada: people who are African, Caribbean and/or Black; gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men; people who use and inject drugs; and Indigenous Peoples (First Nations, Inuit and Métis). Regarding key populations, the summary notes that, “Participants from key populations made up 60% of all participants,” however the team also found that in the first quarter they were successful at reaching some key populations more than others.
Commented Rourke, “In just our first quarter, we’re pleased to have reached so many people in Canada, especially from within our key populations and in more rural and remote areas where there are more barriers to testing and care. Notably, three participants submitted positive results. They can now begin their journey to treatment and care, which shows I’m Ready’s real-life impact. Now, our team will continue to work on expanding I’m Ready’s reach in our efforts to get everyone in Canada who is undiagnosed connected to the care they need, and to end HIV transmission in Canada.”
Learn more about I’m Ready.