A qualitative exploration of sexually transmitted and bloodborne infections (STBBIs) in a Canadian province: the utility of the social ecological model in understanding and reducing the spread of STBBIs in Nova Scotia
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Rates of sexually transmitted and blood borne infections (STBBIs) have been on the rise over the last two decades in Canada. The goal of this study was to better understand the local factors contributing to the spread of STBBIs in Nova Scotia to develop potential strategies for prevention in this province. This goal was achieved through semi-structured interviews with senior Nova Scotia public health officials. The Social Ecological Model was used to help frame the thematic analysis of the data. Key themes that emerged from the data included contributors to STBBI rates, current preventative actions, strategies and actions, and perspectives on testing. The results suggested that more education on STBBIs, reduction of stigma, more conversations on sexuality, enhancement of the current surveillance system, utilization of the Pan-Canadian STBBI Framework for Action, and use of Point Of Care Testing, are important strategies to prevent the spread of STBBIs.