A major online survey for gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men has just been launched across Europe in 33 languages. The European Men-who-have-sex-with-men Internet Survey (EMIS 2017) is intended to help with planning HIV prevention and support activity and is open to all men who have sex with men, however they define their sexuality and whatever their HIV status.
“We all want better sex with less harm,” the welcome page for EMIS 2017 declares. “By taking part you might find out something new. Although there will be no direct benefit to you from the information you provide, it will help health and social services to better meet the communities’ needs. It could also mean that services for gay and bisexual men are funded.”
EMIS 2017 aims to identify the health promotion needs of gay men, bisexual men and other men who have sex with men (MSM), including transgender men and men living with HIV. The survey will generate data required to understand the sexual health needs of MSM populations across Europe and will help direct prevention programmes. The last EMIS survey was carried out across Europe in 2010.
The questions were developed by a network of 70 academic, public health and LGBT community partners, led by Sigma Research at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine. The 2017 survey is a mixture of questions asked in 2010 and new topics. The new areas of investigation include ‘chemsex’ (combining sex and drugs) and PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis for HIV). Chemsex has generated a lot of concern in the last few years, with mental health problems and death being among the serious harms that can arise.
The survey is open to you if you are: a “man who has sex with men”; “a man who is attracted to other men”; or “a man who thinks he might have sex with men in the future.” The research “asks about relationships, sex life, risks and precautions, and use of health services” and the data from the survey will be used to help improve health services for MSM across Europe.
Peter Weatherburn of Sigma Research at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine said, “We had a large response to first EMIS survey. The gay and bisexual community appreciate the value of such surveys. EMIS 2017 takes around 20 minutes to complete and is anonymous. We are encouraging as many men as possible to be a part of this survey. If you are living in Europe and are a man who has sex with other men, then this survey is for you”.
Matthew Hodson, Executive Director of NAM aidsmap commented: “Gay, bisexual and other men who have sex with men continue to be disproportionately affected by HIV and other STIs. The data that we get from EMIS is invaluable in helping those involved in sexual health and HIV prevention understand the needs of some of the communities most affected, enabling us to ensure that the right services and support can be provided.”
EMIS 2017 is now open for participation at: www.emis2017.eu?origin=eu-