FROM THE WEB: Are HIV Filters On Gay Dating Apps Harmful Or Helpful?

HIV Filters

In recent months, how to address and handle issues around STD and HIV status has been a big issue with gay dating apps.

Scruff added a filter that would let members list their use of anti-HIV drug PrEP, whereas Grindr were criticised for a user survey that asked members their feelings about an HIV status filter.

And a recent article by CNN looks at whether such potential measures and filters could cause more harm than good for online daters.

The article argues that such filters could heighten discrimination and stigma that surrounds HIV, leaving online daters feeling unsure as to whether they should disclose their status on such a public forum.

Dr. Renata Sanders, an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine has said: “There is no evidence suggesting that by dividing people by their HIV status on a mobile app where people meet would work to prevent HIV.

“What actually helps prevent HIV is knowing your status and using effective measures to curb HIV spread such as condoms and PrEP.”

And Columbia University’s Dr. Eric Schrimshaw added that these filters could also provide a false sense of security for HIV negative users, who might assume that all potential matches shown to them have the same status – an assumption that could lead some users to have unprotected sex, without knowing their partner’s status.

To read CNN’s full article please click here.