The GBQ+ Community Periodic Surveys (GCPS) are repeated, cross-sectional surveys of gay, bisexual and queer men, and non-binary people who have sex with gay, bisexual and queer men, conducted in the metropolitan areas of seven Australian states and territories. They are a key part of Australia’s behavioural surveillance system for HIV, monitoring sexual practices, drug use and patterns of testing for HIV and other STIs. The surveys were formerly known as the Gay Community Periodic Surveys (from 1996 to 2023), but the name was updated in 2024 to reflect the gender and sexuality diversity in the sample and the communities we work with.

Initiated in 1996, the GCPS are conducted in capital cities and other densely populated areas of Australia where gay men congregate: Adelaide, Canberra, Melbourne, Perth, Queensland (Brisbane, Cairns and the Gold Coast) and Sydney. In 2014, Tasmania was added to the network of GCPS locations. The GCPS deliberately target men and non-binary people who are socially and sexually involved with gay, bi, and queer men, and recruit participants at LGBTQ community venues and events, sexual health services, and online.

The surveillance system relies on a longstanding collaboration between CSRH, The Kirby Institute, state health departments, and national and state community organisations. Recruitment is typically coordinated in each state/territory by a local community organisation. The results of each survey are published in an individual state or territory report, while national trends are presented in our Annual Report of Trends in Behaviour.

The GCPS team have been awarded NHMRC Partnership Project funding during 2021-26. This additional funding will allow the team to test and evaluate changes to the system, increasing recruitment and data collection from overseas-born, bisexual and heterosexual men who have sex with men (MSM). The project will use technological advancements in recruitment, survey research and interviews.

For media enquiries, please contact Professor Martin Holt at m.holt@unsw.edu.au or +61 2 9385 6410.

If you are searching for a report published before 2010, please visit UNSWorks, the UNSW Open Access institutional repository.

Research Centre

Centre for Social Research in Health

Research Area

HIV and Sexual Health

Assessing HIV risk and the social and behavioural characteristics of gay and bisexual men who have recently migrated to Australia: an analysis of national behavioural surveillance data 2019-2021. (Published in Journal of the International AIDS Society, 2024). https://doi.org/10.1002/jia2.26204

Trends in illicit drug use and their association with HIV transmission risks from behavioural surveillance of Australian gay and bisexual men. (Published in Drug and Alcohol Review, 2023). https://doi.org/10.1111/dar.13781

Trends in testing and self-reported diagnoses of sexually transmitted infections in gay and bisexual men in Australia, 2017-2021: analysis of national behavioural surveillance surveys. (Published in Sexually Transmitted Diseases, 2023). https://doi.org/10.1097/OLQ.0000000000001870

Variations in HIV prevention coverage in subpopulations of Australian gay and bisexual men, 2017-21: implications for reducing inequities in the combination prevention era. (Published in AIDS and Behavior, 2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-023-04172-3

National surveillance of home-based HIV testing among Australian gay and bisexual men, 2018-2020: uptake after commercial availability of HIV self-tests. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-023-04124-x

Changing characteristics of HIV-positive gay and bisexual men’s relationships in the era of biomedical prevention. (Published in JAIDS, 2023). https://doi.org/10.1097/QAI.0000000000003224

Structural stigma and sexual health disparities among gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men in Australia. (Published in JAIDS, 2022). https://doi.org/10.1097/QAI.0000000000002851

Changing levels of social engagement with gay men is associated with HIV related outcomes and behaviors: trends in Australian behavioral surveillance 1998–2020. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10508-022-02310-x (open access)

Adjusting behavioural surveillance and assessing disparities in the impact of COVID-19 on gay and bisexual men’s HIV-related behaviour in Australia. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-022-03788-1 (open access)

Increasing pre-exposure prophylaxis use and ‘net prevention coverage’ in behavioural surveillance of Australian gay and bisexual men, 2014-19. (Published in AIDS, 2021). https://doi.org/10.1097/QAD.0000000000002797

Australian gay and bisexual men who use condoms, PrEP or rarely practise HIV risk reduction with casual sex partners: an analysis of national, behavioural surveillance data, 2017–2018. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2020).https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-020-02928-9

Increases in HIV testing frequency in Australian gay and bisexual men are concentrated among PrEP users: an analysis of Australian behavioural surveillance data, 2013–2018. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-020-02826-0

Assessing the HIV prevention needs of young gay and bisexual men in the PrEP era: an analysis of trends in Australian behavioural surveillance, 2014-18. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-020-02797-2  

HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis cascades to assess implementation in Australia: results from repeated, national behavioural surveillance of gay and bisexual men, 2014-2018. (Published in JAIDS, 2020). https://doi.org/10.1097/QAI.0000000000002243 

Gay men’s relationship agreements in the era of pre-exposure prophylaxis: an analysis of Australian behavioural surveillance data. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-019-02737-9 

Which gay and bisexual men attend community-based HIV testing services in Australia? An analysis of behavioural surveillance data. (Published in AIDS & Behavior, 2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-019-02435-6

Community-level changes in condom use and uptake of HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis by gay and bisexual men in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia: results of repeated, behavioural surveillance in 2013-17. (Published in Lancet HIV, 2018). https://doi.org/10.1016/S2352-3018(18)30072-9

Adapting behavioural surveillance to antiretroviral-based HIV prevention: reviewing and anticipating trends in the Australian Gay Community Periodic Surveys. (Published in Sexual Health, 2017). https://doi.org/10.1071/SH16072

The use of mobile phone apps to meet sex partners by Australian gay and bisexual men: an analysis of sex-seeking repertoires and risks for HIV and STIs using behavioural surveillance data. (Published in Sexually Transmitted Infections, 2016). https://sti.bmj.com/content/92/7/502

Methamphetamine use among gay and bisexual men in Australia: trends in recent and regular use from the Gay Community Periodic Surveys.(Published in International Journal of Drug Policy, 2016). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.drugpo.2016.01.003

Social and behavioural correlates of HIV testing among Australian gay and bisexual men in regular relationships. (Published in AIDS and Behavior, 2015). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10461-015-1167-y

HIV prevention by Australian gay and bisexual men with casual partners: the emergence of undetectable viral load as one of a range of risk reduction strategies. (Published in Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, 2015). https://journals.lww.com/jaids/Fulltext/2015/12150/Brief_Report__HIV_Prevention_by_Australian_Gay_and.13.aspx

Estimating antiretroviral treatment coverage rates and viral suppression rates for homosexual men in Australia. (Published in Sexual Health, 2015). https://doi.org/10.1071/SH15037

Alcohol use among a community-based sample of gay and bisexual men: correlates of high-risk use and implications for service provision. (Published in Drug and Alcohol Review, 2015). https://doi.org/10.1111/dar.12234

Younger age, recent HIV diagnosis, no welfare support, and no annual sexually transmissible infection screening are associated with non-use of antiretroviral treatment among HIV-positive gay men in Australia. (Published in HIV Medicine, 2015). https://doi.org/10.1111/hiv.12169

ACT Health, Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, Queensland Health, National Health and Medical Research Council, NSW Ministry of Health, SA Health, WA Health, Tasmanian Department of Health and Human Services, Victorian Department of Health and Human Services

ACON, Australian Federation of AIDS Organisations, Kirby Institute, Living Positive Victoria, Meridian, National Association of People With HIV Australia, Queensland Council for LGBTI Health, Queensland Positive People, Positive Life NSW, South Australian Mobilisation & Empowerment for Sexual Health, Tasmanian Council on AIDS, Hepatitis and Related Diseases, Thorne Harbour Health, Western Australian AIDS Council

Related people

Professor, Research Director (Compliance and Capacity Building) Martin Holt
Professor, Research Director (Compliance and Capacity Building)
Senior Research Fellow Timothy Broady
Senior Research Fellow
Associate Professor Limin Mao
Associate Professor
Adjunct Senior Lecturer Toby Lea
Adjunct Senior Lecturer
Postdoctoral Researcher  Anthony Smith
Postdoctoral Researcher