UK Community Advisory Board (UK-CAB)

Membership terms

Email and discussion forums

UK-CAB members need to have valid email address.

Members must use just one email address to take part in UK-CAB, and inform the secretariat if this changes.

Joining the UK-CAB includes registration on the web-based message boards.

By joining the UK-CAB, members confirm that they understand and accept the terms of membership outlined below.

Guidelines for posting to the UK-CAB forum

The UK-CAB is a community group that focusses on HIV, treatment and related issues.

It is free to join for people living with, or affected by, HIV and to those working in HIV organisations. Membership is not open to employees of pharmaceutical companies. UK-CAB is run by a steering group which is elected by other UK-CAB members.

The discussion forum is an online message board for members, (around 700 April 2021.) Posts on this can cover any aspect of HIV care, for example, developments in HIV services and policies or new guidelines from the British HIV Association (BHIVA). You can also use the online forum to publicise projects you/your organisation are involved in, or to ask questions about your own HIV care – for example early in 2021 questions and discussions have included COVID vaccines.

You can choose how you will receive discussion forum messages and notifications via the Subscriptions page.

Here are a few simple guidelines for using the forum:

1. Please keep posts relevant to HIV treatment or related issues.
2. A clear subject line will help people understand what your post is about.
3. Please be kind and considerate when you post or reply to a post.
4. If you disagree with a post, please focus on the issue and not on the person posting.
5. Show respect for others regarding their gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, HIV status and political views.
6. All posts are confidential to UK-CAB members.
7. Posts should not be for personal profit.
8. Although now rarely an issue, joining the UK-CAB involves agreeing that HIV is the cause of AIDS.

These are unmoderated forums but inappropriate use will be reviewed by the UK-CAB steering group. This might result in some posts being taken off-line or withdrawal of membership privileges.

As a rule, all applicants who meet the conditions outline above will be approved. The steering group may delegate approval, for example to the secretariat. The steering group may decline an application for membership if it believes it is in the UK-CAB’s best interests to do so. If an application is ever declined this can be appealed, but the steering group’s has responsibility for the final decision.

Membership can be ended by the steering group. There is a simple process for an appeal for removed members, but the Steering Group’s decision is final.

Thank you for interest in this project.

The CAB is broadly inclusive. Participation is open to people living with HIV and community advocates and supporters.

  • Approximately 70% of members are HIV positive.
  • Other members have a research, advocacy, health or social care role in HIV.
  • More than half of UK CAB members are women.
  • Membership broadly reflects the demographics of the UK epidemic.

Membership terms

  • Membership of the UK-CAB is free.
  • Individuals join as members in their own right.
  • Many members of the UK-CAB are linked to organisations in the UK. Members also include HIV positive people, people affected by HIV and advocates that are not linked to organisations.
  • Membership is not transferable.
  • Members are welcome to attend all UK-CAB meetings.
  • Membership is open to everyone except employees of pharmaceutical companies or related agencies (see note below).

UK-CAB meetings

Members attending UK-CAB meetings are encouraged to share their input and learning with others wherever possible.

This includes, for example, by holding a local feedback session, or writing about the meeting in a newsletter.

Sharing the outcome of CAB meetings is particularly if the member is associated with another HIV organisation.

Meeting announcements and administration is by email.

For more details see the meetings page.

Involvement in steering group and other activities

  • Any member can volunteer to join the UK-CAB steering group. Membership of the steering group is usually decided by an election of the larger UK-CAB membership.
  • Any members may also serve as community representatives for UK-CAB. This includes, among others, BHIVA guideline writing groups and MRC trial steering committees.
  • All members can be involved in the range of UK-CAB projects.
  • Members may propose and volunteer to lead UK-CAB projects.
  • Members are expected to declare any potential conflicts of interest.
  • Members may volunteer to organise or present at UK-CAB meetings.
  • Members may resign by informing the steering group or secretariat.
  • Membership is formally approved by the steering group.

Other criteria

The current best scientific understanding is that HIV is a virus, and HIV infection can lead to serious illness and death if untreated.

If you disagree with this position you are strongly discouraged from joining the UK-CAB.

Members who maliciously or mischievously question or deny the pathogenesis of HIV may find their views unwelcome, and may have their membership suspended or revoked.

Links to commercial drug manufacturers

Membership of the UK-CAB is not open to people who are directly or indirectly employed by pharmaceutical companies involved in research into HIV treatment and diagnostics. For example, it is also not open to employees of agencies providing PR, marketing and other professional services for these companies.

The UK-CAB work closely with industry, and appreciates the history of collaboration and support from many companies. However, as a community-based network, the UK-CAB recognises that certain professional boundaries are important.