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New York, New York, Population Council, 2004 Apr. 40 p.Preventing unintended pregnancy among HIV-positive women through family planning services is one of the four cornerstones of a comprehensive program for prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT). Reducing unintended pregnancies among HIV-positive women through family planning reduces the number of children potentially orphaned when parents die of AIDS-related illnesses. It also reduces HIV-positive women's vulnerability to morbidity and mortality related to pregnancy and lactation. In addition, family planning for both HIV-positive and -negative women safeguards their health by enabling them to space births. The global public health community––NGOs, governments, and international donors–– has mobilized to design and provide essential PMTCT services: voluntary counseling and testing (VCT), infant feeding counseling, outreach to communities and families, and a short course of antiretroviral therapy. In most cases, the implementation approach has been to incorporate PMTCT into services that already reach pregnant women and women of childbearing age: antenatal care, obstetrical care, and maternal/child health. Yet the complexity of introducing PMTCT into the real world—that is, existing health services in resource-poor settings—soon became clear. Population Council and its research partners have been addressing several key questions about PMTCT services and how well they function in field settings. This report reviews field experiences with the integration of family planning and PMTCT services. It is hoped that this review will provide evidence and information for developing effective strategies for appropriately promoting family planning within PMTCT programs. (excerpt)
Antiretroviral drugs for treating pregnant women and preventing HIV infection in infants: guidelines on care, treatment and support for women living with HIV / AIDS and their children in resource-constrained settings.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2004. v, 49 p.Mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) is the most important source of HIV infection in children. In 2001, the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS committed countries to reduce the proportion of infants infected with HIV by 20% by 2005 and by 50% by 2010. Achieving this urgently requires an increase in access to integrated and comprehensive programmes to prevent HIV infection in infants and young children. Such programmes consist of interventions focusing on primary prevention of HIV infection among women and their partners; prevention of unintended pregnancies among HIV-infected women; prevention of HIV transmission from HIV-infected women to their children; and the provision of treatment, care and support for women living with HIV/AIDS, their children and families. WHO convened a Technical Consultation on Antiretroviral Drugs and the Prevention of Mother-to-child Transmission of HIV Infection in Resource-limited Settings in Geneva, Switzerland on 5–6 February 2004. Scientists, policymakers, programme managers and community representatives reviewed the most recent experience with programmes and evidence on the safety and efficacy of various antiretroviral (ARV) regimens for preventing HIV infection in infants. This information was reviewed in the context of the rapid expansion of ARV treatment in resource-constrained settings using standardized and simplified drug regimens. Prior to the Technical Consultation, a draft set of recommendations had been issued for public comment. (excerpt)
Early breastfeeding cessation as an option for reducing postnatal transmission of HIV in Africa: issues, risks, and challenges.
Washington, D.C., Academy for Educational Development [AED], 2001 Aug. 40 p.This document examines the recent WHO recommendations for modifying breastfeeding to reduce postnatal transmission of HIV in Africa. Specifically, it reviews the three-stage strategy for "modified breastfeeding" for HIV- positive mothers that involves exclusive breastfeeding followed by an early transition to exclusive replacement feeding. Organized into six chapters, this document also describes a step-by-step process for making the transition from exclusive breastfeeding to exclusive replacement feeding. However, many of the behaviors discussed in this review represent a major change in traditional infant care practices in Africa, and their feasibility and impact on child survival have yet to be determined. It is recommended, therefore, that these guidelines be subjected to additional research and testing before being implemented.
[Unpublished] .  p.The transmission of HIV from mother-to-child represents a major cause of illness and death among young children, particularly in developing countries with a high prevalence of HIV infection. In addition, AIDS threatens to reverse many years of steady progress in child survival that has been achieved through measures such as the promotion of breast-feeding, immunization and oral rehydration. In response to this situation, three of UNAIDS cosponsors: UN Children's Fund, WHO and UN Population Fund have been involved in developing interventions to prevent mother to child transmission of HIV and constituted an Inter-Agency Task Team. A strategic option paper, guidelines on infant feeding and guidelines on voluntary HIV testing for pregnant women in high HIV prevalence countries are included in the document section of this paper. Also mentioned are the implementing strategies for preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV, which Country Program Advisers and cosponsor field staff should be aware of.