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Lancet. HIV. 2017 Aug; 4(8):e321.Add to my documents.
Lancet. Infectious Diseases. 2017 Jul; 17(7):700-701.Add to my documents.
What research is needed to address the co-epidemics of HIV and cardiometabolic disease in sub-Saharan Africa?
Lancet. Diabetes and Endocrinology. 2018 Jan; 6(1):7-9.Add to my documents.
Lancet. 2017 Sep 30; 390(10102):1618-1619.Add to my documents.
African Journal of AIDS Research. 2017 Dec; 16(4):v-ix.Add to my documents.
Lancet. Infectious Diseases. 2017 Jun; 17(6):589-590.Add to my documents.
The counter effects of the Ebola epidemic on control and treatment of HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria in West Africa.
AIDS. 2016 Oct 23; 30(16):2555-2559.Add to my documents.
AIDS Research and Human Retroviruses. 2017 Oct; 33(10):985-992.Human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) is the major cause of acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) in humans, where the immune system totally succumbs to the virus. A large proportion of the AIDS infected belong to developing countries and AIDS prevalence is intensified by severe poverty, malnutrition, and famine; fatal illnesses with a scorn shortage of medical amenities complemented with the lack of education and development. Current Pakistani health system setting is in a dire need of improvement. Low literacy rates, high birth rates, and associated maternal mortality plus a lack of clean drinking water and appropriate sanitation system have a serious impact on general living conditions contributing to a relatively short lifespan. HIV is, therefore, becoming a growing health concern in Pakistan with a rapid rise in the reported cases. AIDS is most prevalent among injection drug users (IDUs), male/female sex workers, and unchecked deported migrant workforce. To combat this virus, the Pakistan Government has been working hard over the past few years with local bodies and international organizations in an effort to combat this menace. This review aims to discuss the risk factors for the rise of this epidemic in the country and the recommendations, efforts to be done to address this alarming issue.
New England Journal of Medicine. 2018 May 17; 378(20):1859-1861.Add to my documents.
'Even when you are afraid, you stay': Provision of maternity care during the Ebola virus epidemic: A qualitative study.
Midwifery. 2017 Sep; 52:19-26.OBJECTIVE: to explore nurse-midwives understanding of their role in and ability to continue to provide routine and emergency maternity services during the time of the Ebola virus disease epidemic in Sierra Leone. DESIGN: a hermenuetic phenomenological approach was used to discover the lived experiences of nurse-midwives through 66 face to face interviews. Following verbatim transcription, an iterative approach to data analysis was adopted using framework analysis to discover the essence of the lived experience. SETTING: health facilities designated to provide maternity care across all 14 districts of Sierra Leone. PARTICIPANTS: nurses, midwives, medical staff and managers providing maternal and newborn care during the Ebola epidemic in facilities designated to provide basic or emergency obstetric care. FINDINGS: the healthcare system in Sierra Leone was ill prepared to cope with the epidemic. Fear of Ebola and mistrust kept women from accessing care at a health facility. Healthcare providers continued to provide maternity care because of professional duty, responsibility to the community and religious beliefs. KEY CONCLUSIONS: nurse-midwives faced increased risks of catching Ebola compared to other health workers but continued to provide essential maternity care. IMPLICATIONS FOR PRACTICE: future preparedness plans must take into account the impact that epidemics have on the ability of the health system to continue to provide vital routine and emergency maternal and newborn health care. Healthcare providers need to have a stronger voice in health system rebuilding and planning and management to ensure that health service can continue to provide vital maternal and newborn care during epidemics.
BMC Public Health. 2018 Jan 25; 18(1):180.BACKGROUND: HIV workplace policies have become an important tool in addressing the HIV Pandemic in Sub-Saharan Africa. In Zambia, the National AIDS Council has been advocating for establishing of HIV/AIDS workplace policies to interested companies, however no formal evaluation has been done to assess uptake and implementation. The study aimed to establish the existence of HIV/AIDS policies and programs in the private sector and to understand implementation factors and experiences in addressing HIV epidemic drivers through these programs. METHODS: A mixed method assessment of the availability of policies was conducted in 128 randomly selected member companies of Zambia Federation of Employers in Lusaka. Categorized variables were analysed on Policy and programs using Stata version 12.0 for associations: Concurrently, 28 in-depth interviews were conducted on purposively sampled implementers. Qualitative results were analysed thematically before integrating them with qualitative findings. RESULTS: Policies were found in 47/128 (36.72%) workplaces and the private sector accounted for 34/47 (72.34%) of all workplaces with a policy. Programs were available in 56/128 (43.75%) workplaces. The availability of policy was 2.7 times more likely to occur with increased size of a workplace, P value = 0.0001, (P < 0.05). Management support was 0.253 times more likely to occur in workplaces with policy, P value = 0.013, (P < 0.05) compared to those without. Having a specific budget for programs was 0.23 times more likely to occur in workplaces with a policy (P < 0.05) than those without a policy. Implementation was hindered by reduced funding, lack of time, sensitisation and lack of monitoring/evaluation systems. HIV awareness (56/56, 100%) and HIV/AIDS/Stigma (47/56, 83.93%) were the most addressed epidemic drivers through programs while Mother to Child Transmission (30/56 53.57%) and Males having sex with males were the least addressed (18/56, 32.14%). CONCLUSION: HIV/AIDS policies exist in the private sector at a very low proportion but policy translation was very high suggesting that workplaces with polices are likely to implement programs. The eradication of HIV/AIDS by 2030, requires addressing epidemic drivers with a focus on marginalised populations, gender integration, a wellness and rights based approach within the context of the legal framework.
Population Studies. 2018 Mar; 72(1):1-15.In 2015, the United Nations (UN) issued probabilistic population projections for all countries up to 2100, by simulating future levels of total fertility and life expectancy and combining the results using a standard cohort component projection method. For the 40 countries with generalized HIV/AIDS epidemics, the mortality projections used the Spectrum/Estimation and Projection Package (EPP) model, a complex, multistate model designed for short-term projections of policy-relevant quantities for the epidemic. We propose a simpler approach that is more compatible with existing UN projection methods for other countries. Changes in life expectancy are projected probabilistically using a simple time series regression and then converted to age- and sex-specific mortality rates using model life tables designed for countries with HIV/ AIDS epidemics. These are then input to the cohort component method, as for other countries. The method performed well in an out-of-sample cross-validation experiment. It gives similar short-run projections to Spectrum/EPP, while being simpler and avoiding multistate modelling.
Heterogeneity in geographical trends of HIV epidemics among key populations in Pakistan: a mathematical modeling study of survey data.
Journal of Global Health. 2018 Jun; 8(1):010412.Background: Assessing patterns and trends in new infections is key to better understanding of HIV epidemics, and is best done through monitoring changes in incidence over time. In this study, we examined disparities in geographical trends of HIV epidemics among people who inject drugs (PWIDs), female sex workers (FSWs) and hijra/transgender/male sex workers (H/MSWs), in Pakistan. Methods: The UNAIDS Estimation and Projection Package (EPP) mathematical model was used to explore geographical trends in HIV epidemics. Four rounds of mapping and surveillance data collected among key populations (KPs) across 20 cities in Pakistan between 2005-2011 was used for modeling. Empirical estimates of HIV prevalence of each KP in each city were used to fit the model to estimate prevalence and incidence over time. Results: HIV incidence among PWIDs in Pakistan reached its peak in 2011, estimated at 45.3 per 1000 person-years. Incidence was projected to continue to rise from 18.9 in 2015 to 24.3 in 2020 among H/MSWs and from 3.2 in 2015 to 6.3 in 2020 among FSWs. The number of people living with HIV in Pakistan was estimated to steadily increase through at least 2020. HIV incidence peak among PWIDs ranged from 16.2 in 1997 in Quetta to 71.0 in 2010 in Faisalabad (per 1000 person-years). Incidence among H/MSWs may continue to rise through 2020 in all the cities, except in Larkana where it peaked in the early 2000s. In 2015, model estimated incidence among FSWs was 8.1 in Karachi, 6.6 in Larkana, 2.0 in Sukkur and 1.2 in Lahore (per 1000 person-years). Conclusions: There exists significant geographical heterogeneity in patterns and trends of HIV sub-epidemics in Pakistan. Focused interventions and service delivery approaches, different by KP and city, are recommended.
Global Public Health. 2019 Jan; 14(1):9-22.Implementing effective health interventions in recent epidemics has been difficult due to the potentially global nature of their spread and sociocultural dynamics, raising questions concerning how to develop culturally-appropriate preventive measures, and how these health threats are understood locally. In Belize, health policy makers have only been marginally effective in managing infections and mosquito vectors, and Zika has been declared endemic in certain regions, particularly on the island of Caye Caulker. Based on ethnographic research conducted primarily in 2017, we examine how perspectives of Zika-related health consequences are shaped, and how state interventions to manage Zika are understood. We argue that despite its declared endemic status, Zika is not perceived as a true health concern for community members due to numerous neoliberal structural challenges. Moreover, the state's restrictive form of reproductive governance which limits family planning services is forcing individuals to weigh conflicting conceptions of health consequences. This also contributes to an ambiguous healthcare environment for health practitioners, giving them an unclear picture of the scope of Zika as a public health concern. We also consider how critical medical anthropology and feminist analytical approaches are useful in exploring these questions and contributing to understandings of the health impacts of Zika.
Lancet. 2017 Aug 12; 390(10095):626.Add to my documents.
Rethinking prevention: Shifting conceptualizations of evidence and intervention in South Africa's AIDS epidemic.
BioSocieties. 2018; 13(1):148-169.In recent years, statements about the 'end of AIDS' and an 'AIDS-free world' have dominated headlines about the epidemic. This contemporary moment of extraordinary optimism has been prompted in significant part by developments in the field of HIV prevention. New approaches to prevention include techniques that are markedly different from older strategies; new prevention techniques are targeted and relentlessly biomedical, and have increasingly displaced older behavior change programs and broad based social measures. HIV/AIDS, which was long called a 'social epidemic' marked by unprecedented human rights struggles and community action, has increasingly become dominated by a discourse and practice of discrete interventions and their calculable efficacy. This article aims to explain the shift in conceptualizations and practices of prevention, and the changed understanding of the epidemic. How did prevention become about access to drugs? How did the discourse around HIV/AIDS move from a concern with social determinants of disease and human rights to matters of efficiency, efficacy, and measurable impact? The article argues that a conjunction of new biomedical technologies, changing managerial logics of donors and governments, and emergent evidentiary practices have led to the ascent of new approaches to prevention. To support this argument, it traces prevention strategies over the last three decades in the context of South Africa's HIV/AIDS epidemic. The South African story, while unique and historically situated, nonetheless serves as a lens through which to understand broad based transformations underway in HIV/AIDS and in global health writ large. © 2017 Macmillan Publishers Ltd.
Sustainability. 2018; 10(4)This study was conducted in Zambia from 2002 to 2008, a country greatly affected by the HIV (Human Immunodeficiency Virus)/AIDS (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) epidemic. The global, national, as well as local discourses on spread and mitigation were clustered around scientific knowledge and the local context and cultural traditions. The education sector struggled with implementing the national HIV/AIDS education strategy but by a broader stakeholder involvement, and a close collaboration between the educational sector and tribal chiefs and their traditional internal structures, a localized approach emerged. The overall objective of the paper is to illustrate how a multi-voiced strategy can bring about sustainable change, illustrated by this study. The study used qualitative constructivist and grounded theoretical approaches, and applied the third generation of cultural and historical activity theory (CHAT) as an analytical tool. Bernstein's concept, symbolic control, contributes to a broader understanding of the underlying processes and outcomes of the study. The findings revealed that the strategically monitored multi-voiced participation of local stakeholders created a learning space where both scientific and indigenous knowledge were blended, and thereby creating solutions to preventive action meeting the local needs. The study exemplifies these processes by identifying contradictions between the various levels and activity systems involved, by listing some of their characteristics, manifestations and finally their negotiated solutions. These solutions, or the third space interventions, the outcome of the multi-voiced participation, is in the paper used to explore a theoretical framework for an ethical and decolonized development strategy; a precondition for sustained local development. © 2018 by the authors.
International Journal of Epidemiology. 2016 Oct; 45(5):1394-1400.Add to my documents.
The HIV Epidemic in Sub-Saharan Africa is Aging: Evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys in Sub-Saharan Africa.
AIDS and Behavior. 2017 Jul; 21(Suppl 1):101-113.We use the individual-level data from all available Demographic and Health Surveys (DHS) from 27 sub-Saharan African countries conducted between 2003 and 2012 (40 population-based and nationally representative surveys in total) to calculate HIV testing consent rates and HIV prevalence for each country separately, as well as for the pooled sample. The pooled sample comprised of 427,130 individuals. In most countries HIV prevalence in adults aged 45 years and above is higher than in the total population. We further show that over the past decade HIV prevalence has increased in older age groups, while it has decreased in younger ones. While the age patterns of HIV consent rates vary across the 27 countries included in our sample, analysis of the pooled sample across all countries reveals a u-shaped relationship with lowest consent rates around age 35 years and higher consent rates among younger and older people. We argue that future DHS and other population-based HIV surveys should offer HIV testing to all adults without age limits.
Arlington, Virginia, JSI Research and Training Institute, Advancing Partners and Communities, 2017. 20 p. (USAID Agreement No. AID-OAA-A-12-00047)Between May 2014 and January 2016, Sierra Leone was impacted by the worst Ebola outbreak in recorded history. The outbreak exposed critical gaps within the country’s health system, revealing the need to strengthen health services to prevent future outbreaks. To begin the country’s recovery, Sierra Leone launched the Health Sector Recovery Plan, 2015-2020. USAID, through the Advancing Partners & Communities Project, supported Sierra Leone’s Ministry of Health and Sanitation in achieving key results of the President’s Recovery Priorities, with a focus on reproductive, maternal, newborn, and child health services at peripheral health units. The project’s contributions generated significant improvements in infection prevention and control practices; infrastructure for water, sanitation, and hygiene and waste management; human resource capacity building; and community engagement.
Status of HIV Epidemic Control Among Adolescent Girls and Young Women Aged 15-24 Years - Seven African Countries, 2015-2017.
MMWR. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. 2018 Jan 12; 67(1):29-32.In 2016, an estimated 1.5 million females aged 15-24 years were living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection in Eastern and Southern Africa, where the prevalence of HIV infection among adolescent girls and young women (3.4%) is more than double that for males in the same age range (1.6%) (1). Progress was assessed toward the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) 2020 targets for adolescent girls and young women in sub-Saharan Africa (90% of those with HIV infection aware of their status, 90% of HIV-infected persons aware of their status on antiretroviral treatment [ART], and 90% of those on treatment virally suppressed [HIV viral load <1,000 HIV RNA copies/mL]) (2) using data from recent Population-based HIV Impact Assessment (PHIA) surveys in seven countries. The national prevalence of HIV infection in adolescent girls and young women aged 15-24 years, the percentage who were aware of their status, and among those persons who were aware, the percentage who had achieved viral suppression were calculated. The target for viral suppression among all persons with HIV infection is 73% (the product of 90% x 90% x 90%). Among all seven countries, the prevalence of HIV infection among adolescent girls and young women was 3.6%; among those in this group, 46.3% reported being aware of their HIV-positive status, and 45.0% were virally suppressed. Sustained efforts by national HIV and public health programs to diagnose HIV infection in adolescent girls and young women as early as possible to ensure rapid initiation of ART should help achieve epidemic control among adolescent girls and young women.
Engagement of Gay Men and Other Men Who Have Sex with Men (MSM) in the Response to HIV: A Critical Step in Achieving an AIDS-Free Generation.
AIDS and Behavior. 2016 Dec; 20(Suppl 3):330-340.Men who have sex with men (MSM) continue to be at elevated risk for HIV acquisition and transmission secondary to biological and behavioral characteristics, social and sexual network characteristics, community environmental factors, and structural factors. HIV incidence rates remain high among MSM in both low- and high-income settings, and in both concentrated and more generalized HIV epidemic settings. While data quality tends to be poorer, the best estimates collectively suggest that MSM have up to 20 times the odds of living with HIV as compared to other reproductive aged adults across low- and middle-income countries. Recent prevention strategies to lower biological HIV transmission and acquisition risks, including the early use of antiretrovirals to decrease infectiousness for those living with HIV, and pre-exposure prophylaxis for those at significant risk of HIV acquisition, have demonstrated the potential to change the trajectory of the HIV epidemics among MSM. However, the coverage and effectiveness of these approaches is limited by structural factors including the punitive legal frameworks and institutional discrimination that contribute to limited uptake, challenges to adherence, and suboptimal health-seeking behaviors among MSM. More intensive efforts will be required to reach MSM who do not currently have access to relevant and effective prevention and treatment services or elect not to access these services given enacted and/or perceived stigma. Respect for human rights, including efforts to aggressively confront and combat the forms of stigma that are preventing us from achieving an AIDS-Free generation, are needed for all people including gay men and other MSM.
HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, and tobacco in Brazil: a syndemic that calls for integrated interventions. HIV/AIDS, tuberculose e tabagismo no Brasil: uma sindemia que exige intervencoes integradas.
Cadernos de Saude Publica. 2017 Sep 21; 33Suppl 3(Suppl 3):e00124215.Add to my documents.
Converging epidemics of sexually transmitted infections and bacterial vaginosis in southern African female adolescents at risk of HIV.
International Journal of STD and AIDS. 2018 May; 29(6):531-539.Adolescents in Africa are at high risk for HIV infection, other sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and bacterial vaginosis (BV). Since behavior and burden of STIs/BV may influence HIV risk, behavioral risk factors and prevalence of STIs/BV were compared in HIV-seronegative adolescent females (n = 298; 16-22 years) from two South African communities (Soweto and Cape Town). STIs ( Chlamydia trachomatis, Neisseria gonorrhoeae, Trichomonas vaginalis, Mycoplasma genitalium, herpes simplex virus (HSV)-1, HSV-2, Treponema pallidum, and Haemophilus ducreyi) were detected by multiplex polymerase chain reaction, human papillomavirus (HPV) by Roche Linear Array, and BV by Nugent scoring. Rates of BV (Nugent >/=7; 46.6%) and HPV (66.8%) were high in both communities. Prevalence of C. trachomatis and N. gonorrhoeae were >2-fold higher in Cape Town than Soweto (Chlamydia: 42% [62/149] versus 18% [26/148], p < 0.0001; gonorrhoea 11% [17/149] versus 5% [7/148], p = 0.05). Only 24% of adolescents with vaginal discharge-causing STIs or BV were symptomatic. In South African adolescents, clinical symptoms compatible with vaginal discharge syndrome had a sensitivity of 23% and specificity of 85% for the diagnosis of discharge-causing STI or BV. In a region with high HIV prevalence and incidence, >70% of young women with treatable conditions that could enhance HIV risk would have been missed because they lacked symptoms associated with syndromic management.
Journal of the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care. 2017 Jan/Feb; 16(1):56-74.The Caribbean and Central America represent a formidable challenge for researchers and policy makers in the HIV field, due to their pronounced heterogeneity in terms of social, economic, and cultural contexts and the different courses the HIV epidemic has followed in the region. Such contrasting contexts and epidemics can be exemplified by 2 countries that share the island of Hispaniola, the French Creole-speaking Haiti, and the Spanish-speaking Dominican Republic. Haiti has experienced the worst epidemics outside of sub-Saharan Africa. Following a protracted economic and social crisis, recently aggravated by a devastating earthquake, the local HIV epidemic could experience resurgence. The region, strategically located on the way between coca-producing countries and the profitable North American markets, has been a transshipment area for years. Notwithstanding, the impact of such routes on local drug scenes has been very heterogeneous and dynamic, depending on a combination of local mores, drug enforcement activities, and the broad social and political context. Injecting drug use remains rare in the region, but local drug scenes are dynamic under the influence of increasing mobility of people and goods to and from North and South America, growing tourism and commerce, and prostitution. The multiple impacts of the recent economic and social crisis, as well as the influence of drug-trafficking routes across the Caribbean and other Latin American countries require a sustained effort to track changes in the HIV risk environment to inform sound drug policies and initiatives to minimize drug-related harms in the region.