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1.
Cien Saude Colet ; 26(5): 1853-1862, 2021 May.
Article in Portuguese, English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20238966

ABSTRACT

This essay reflects on sexual practices and prevention in the contexts of the AIDS and COVID-19 pandemics. It analyses data collected between July and October 2020 through participant observation, as part of an ethnographic research project on HIV vulnerability and prevention among men who have sex with men in the Metropolitan Region of Recife, state of Pernambuco (PE), Brazil. The results point to the relevance of physical appearance and the affective bond between partners in engendering emotions that mediate coping with the risk of infection during both pandemics. It indicates the need to incorporate those communicational dimensions into informational materials to make them more effective.


Este ensaio reflete sobre práticas sexuais e prevenção nos contextos das pandemias de AIDS e da COVID-19. Analisa dados coletados entre julho e outubro de 2020, por meio de observação participante, no âmbito de uma pesquisa etnográfica sobre vulnerabilidade e prevenção ao HIV entre homens que fazem sexo com homens da Região Metropolitana do Recife. Os resultados apontam para a relevância da aparência corporal e da vinculação afetiva entre os parceiros no engendramento de emoções que medeiam a lida com risco de infecção em ambas as pandemias. Sinaliza para a necessidade de incorporar essas dimensões comunicacionais em materiais informativos, de modo a torná-los mais eficazes.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/epidemiology , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/prevention & control , Brazil/epidemiology , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Homosexuality, Male , Humans , Male , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Sexual Behavior , Sexual Partners , Sexuality
2.
Curr Opin HIV AIDS ; 18(4): 191-208, 2023 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20237492

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Passive administration of broadly neutralizing antibodies (bNAbs) is being evaluated as a therapeutic approach to prevent or treat HIV infections. However, a number of challenges face the widespread implementation of passive transfer for HIV. To reduce the need of recurrent administrations of bNAbs, gene-based delivery approaches have been developed which overcome the limitations of passive transfer. RECENT FINDINGS: The use of DNA and mRNA for the delivery of bNAbs has made significant progress. DNA-encoded monoclonal antibodies (DMAbs) have shown great promise in animal models of disease and the underlying DNA-based technology is now being tested in vaccine trials for a variety of indications. The COVID-19 pandemic greatly accelerated the development of mRNA-based technology to induce protective immunity. These advances are now being successfully applied to the delivery of monoclonal antibodies using mRNA in animal models. Delivery of bNAbs using viral vectors, primarily adeno-associated virus (AAV), has shown great promise in preclinical animal models and more recently in human studies. Most recently, advances in genome editing techniques have led to engineering of monoclonal antibody expression from B cells. These efforts aim to turn B cells into a source of evolving antibodies that can improve through repeated exposure to the respective antigen. SUMMARY: The use of these different platforms for antibody delivery has been demonstrated across a wide range of animal models and disease indications, including HIV. Although each approach has unique strengths and weaknesses, additional advances in efficiency of gene delivery and reduced immunogenicity will be necessary to drive widespread implementation of these technologies. Considering the mounting clinical evidence of the potential of bNAbs for HIV treatment and prevention, overcoming the remaining technical challenges for gene-based bNAb delivery represents a relatively straightforward path towards practical interventions against HIV infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , HIV-1 , Animals , Humans , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies , HIV Antibodies , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Pandemics , HIV-1/genetics , COVID-19/therapy , Antibodies, Monoclonal/genetics
3.
BMC Public Health ; 23(1): 716, 2023 04 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20236491

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Antiretroviral medication coverage remains sub-optimal in much of the United States, particularly the Sothern region, and Non-Hispanic Black or African American persons (NHB) continue to be disproportionately impacted by the HIV epidemic. The "Ending the HIV Epidemic in the U.S." (EHE) initiative seeks to reduce HIV incidence nationally by focusing resources towards the most highly impacted localities and populations. This study evaluates the impact of hypothetical improvements in ART and PrEP coverage to estimate the levels of coverage needed to achieve EHE goals in the South. METHODS: We developed a stochastic, agent-based network model of 500,000 individuals to simulate the HIV epidemic and hypothetical improvements in ART and PrEP coverage. RESULTS: New infections declined by 78.6% at 90%/40% ART/PrEP and 94.3% at 100%/50% ART/PrEP. Declines in annual incidence rates surpassed 75% by 2025 with 90%/40% ART/PrEP and 90% by 2030 with 100%/50% ART/PrEP coverage. Increased ART coverage among NHB MSM was associated with a linear decline in incidence among all MSM. Declines in incidence among Hispanic/Latino and White/Other MSM were similar regardless of which MSM race group increased their ART coverage, while the benefit to NHB MSM was greatest when their own ART coverage increased. The incidence rate among NHB women declined by over a third when either NHB heterosexual men or NHB MSM increased their ART use respectively. Increased use of PrEP was associated with a decline in incidence for the groups using PrEP. MSM experienced the largest absolute declines in incidence with increasing PrEP coverage, followed by NHB women. CONCLUSIONS: Our analysis indicates that it is possible to reach EHE goals. The largest reductions in HIV incidence can be achieved by increasing ART coverage among MSM and all race groups benefit regardless of differences in ART initiation by race. Improving ART coverage to > 90% should be prioritized with a particular emphasis on reaching NHB MSM. Such a focus will reduce the largest number of incident cases, reduce racial HIV incidence disparities among both MSM and women, and reduce racial health disparities among persons with HIV. NHB women should also be prioritized for PrEP outreach.


Subject(s)
Anti-HIV Agents , Disease Eradication , HIV Infections , Health Status Disparities , Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis , Female , Humans , Male , Anti-HIV Agents/therapeutic use , Goals , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Homosexuality, Male/statistics & numerical data , Incidence , Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis/methods , Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis/statistics & numerical data , Sexual and Gender Minorities/statistics & numerical data , United States/epidemiology , Disease Eradication/methods , Disease Eradication/statistics & numerical data
5.
PLoS One ; 18(5): e0281173, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20244868

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: While mainstream messaging about human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) disparities continues to highlight individual risk-taking behavior among historically marginalized groups, including racial, ethnic, sexual, and gender minoritized patients, the effect of structural factors and social determinants of health (SDOH) on morbidity and mortality remain underestimated. Systemic barriers, including a failure of adequate and acceptable screening, play a significant role in the disparate rates of disease. Primary care practitioner (PCP) competency in culturally responsive screening practices is key to reducing the impact of structural factors on HIV rates and outcomes. To address this issue, a scoping review will be performed to inform the development of a training series and social marketing campaign to improve the competency of PCPs in this area. OBJECTIVES: This scoping review aims to analyze what recent literature identify as facilitators and barriers of culturally responsive HIV and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) screening practices for historically marginalized populations, specifically racial, ethnic, sexual, and gender minoritized groups. A secondary aim is to identify themes and gaps in the literature to help guide future opportunities for research. METHODS: This scoping review will be performed following the framework set forth by Arksey and O'Malley and the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses extension for scoping reviews (PRISMA-ScR). Relevant studies between the years 2019-2022 will be identified using a rigorous search strategy across four databases: MEDLINE (via PubMed), Scopus, Cochrane (CENTRAL; via Wiley), and CINAHL (via EBSCO), using Boolean and Medical Subject Headings (MeSH) search terms. Studies will be uploaded to the data extraction tool Covidence to remove duplicates and perform a title/abstract screening, followed by a full-text screening and data extraction. RESULTS: Data will be extracted and analyzed for themes related to culturally responsive HIV and PrEP screening practices in clinical encounters with the identified target populations. Results will be reported according to PRISMA-ScR guidelines. DISCUSSION: To our knowledge, this is the first study to use scoping methods to investigate barriers and facilitators to culturally responsive HIV and PrEP screening practices for racial, ethnic, sexual, and gender minoritized populations. The limitations of this study include the analysis restrictions of a scoping review and the timeframe of this review. We anticipate that this study's findings will interest PCPs, public health professionals, community activists, patient populations, and researchers interested in culturally responsive care. The results of this scoping review will inform a practitioner-level intervention that will support culturally sensitive quality improvement of HIV-related prevention and care for patients from minoritized groups. Additionally, the themes and gaps found during analysis will guide future avenues of research related to this topic.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Sexual Behavior , Humans , Health Personnel , Knowledge , MEDLINE , HIV Infections/diagnosis , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Systematic Reviews as Topic , Review Literature as Topic
7.
Lancet HIV ; 10(6): e412-e420, 2023 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20242778

ABSTRACT

Cervical cancer is the fourth most common malignancy in women of reproductive age globally. The burden of this disease is highest in low-income and middle-income countries, especially among women living with HIV. In 2018, WHO launched a global strategy to accelerate cervical cancer elimination through rapid scale-up of prophylactic vaccination, cervical screening, and treatment of precancers and cancers. This initiative was key in raising a call for action to address the stark global disparities in cervical cancer burden. However, achieving elimination of cervical cancer among women with HIV requires consideration of biological and social issues affecting this population. This Position Paper shows specific challenges and uncertainties on the way to cervical cancer elimination for women living with HIV and highlights the scarcity of evidence for the effect of interventions in this population. We argue that reaching equity of outcomes for women with HIV will require substantial advances in approaches to HPV vaccination and improved understanding of the long-term effectiveness of HPV vaccines in settings with high HIV burden cervical cancer, just as HIV, is affected by social and structural factors such as poverty, stigma, and gender discrimination, that place the elimination strategy at risk. Global efforts must, therefore, be galvanised to ensure women living with HIV have optimised interventions, given their substantial risk of this preventable malignancy.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Papillomavirus Infections , Papillomavirus Vaccines , Uterine Cervical Neoplasms , Female , Humans , Uterine Cervical Neoplasms/epidemiology , Uterine Cervical Neoplasms/prevention & control , Early Detection of Cancer , HIV Infections/complications , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Papillomavirus Infections/complications , Papillomavirus Infections/prevention & control , Poverty
8.
BMC Res Notes ; 16(1): 90, 2023 May 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20235604

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Adherence to antiretroviral therapy and COVID-19 preventive behaviours among people living with HIV during the pandemic has received little attention in the literature. To address this gap in knowledge, the present study assessed the associations between viral load, adherence to antiretroviral therapy and the use of COVID-19 prevention strategies during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic. This was a secondary analysis of data generated through an online survey recruiting participants from 152 countries. Complete data from 680 respondents living with HIV were extracted for this analysis. RESULTS: The findings suggest that detectable viral load was associated with lower odds of wearing facemasks (AOR: 0.44; 95% CI:0.28-0.69; p < 0.01) and washing hands as often as recommended (AOR: 0.64; 95% CI: 0.42-0.97; p = 0.03). Also, adherence to the use of antiretroviral drugs was associated with lower odds of working remotely (AOR: 0.60; 95% CI: 0.38-0.94; p = 0.02). We found a complex relationship between HIV positive status biological parameters and adherence to COVID-19 preventive measures that may be partly explained by risk-taking behaviours. Further studies are needed to understand the reasons for the study findings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , COVID-19/epidemiology , Viral Load , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Anti-Retroviral Agents/therapeutic use
9.
PLoS One ; 18(4): e0284056, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2327771

ABSTRACT

This study identified subgroups of sexual behaviors associated with increased STI/HIV risk among those eligible for but not using pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in order to improve PrEP uptake and prioritization in the context of restricted capacity. We used data from sexual health centers (SHCs) in the Netherlands, including all visits of eligible but non-PrEP using men who have sex with men (MSM), men who have sex with men and women (MSMW) and transgender persons between July 2019 (start of the Dutch national PrEP pilot (NPP)) and June 2021. Using latent class analysis (LCA), we identified classes of sexual behaviors (number of partners, chemsex, group sex and sex work) and explored whether these classes were associated with STI diagnosis and sociodemographics. Across 45,582 visits of 14,588 eligible non-PrEP using individuals, the best fitting LCA model contained three classes of sexual behaviors. Classes were distinguished by seldomly reported sexual behaviors (class 1; 53.5%, n = 24,383), the highest proportions of ≥6 partners and group sex (class 2; 29.8%, n = 13,596), and the highest proportions of chemsex and sex work (class 3; 16.7% of visits, n = 7,603). Visits in classes 2 and 3 (vs. class 1) were significantly more often with individuals who were diagnosed with an STI, older (≥36 vs. ≤35 years), MSMW (vs. MSM), and visiting an urban (vs. non-urban) SHC; while these visits were significantly less often with individuals from an STI/HIV endemic area. The percentage of visits at which an STI was diagnosed was 17.07% (n = 4,163) in class 1, 19.53% (n = 2,655) in class 2 and 25.25% (n = 1,920) in class 3. The highest risk of STI, and thereby HIV, was in those engaging in specific subgroups of sexual behavior characterized by frequently reporting multiple partners, group sex, sex work or chemsex. PrEP uptake should be encouraged and prioritized for these individuals.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Male , Humans , Female , Homosexuality, Male , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Netherlands/epidemiology , Sexual Behavior
10.
PLoS Med ; 20(4): e1004203, 2023 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2321978

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The growing population of adolescents and young people (AYP) aged 15 to 24 in sub-Saharan Africa face a high burden of HIV in many settings. Unintended pregnancies among adolescent girls in the region remain high. Nonetheless, the sexual and reproductive health (SRH) service needs of AYP have remained underserved. We conducted a cluster-randomised trial (CRT) to estimate the impact of community-based, peer-led SRH service provision on knowledge of HIV status and other SRH outcomes, including met need for contraceptives. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Yathu Yathu was a cluster-randomised trial (CRT) conducted from 2019 to 2021 in 2 urban communities in Lusaka, Zambia. The communities were divided into 20 zones (approximately 2,350 AYP/zone) that were randomly allocated to the Yathu Yathu intervention or control arm. In each intervention zone, a community-based hub, staffed by peer support workers, was established to provide SRH services. In 2019, a census was conducted in all zones; all consenting AYP aged 15 to 24 were given a Yathu Yathu card, which allowed them to accrue points for accessing SRH services at the hub and health facility (intervention arm) or the health facility only (control arm). Points could be exchanged for rewards, thus acting as an incentive to use SRH services in both arms. We conducted a cross-sectional survey in 2021 to estimate the impact of Yathu Yathu on the primary outcome: knowledge of HIV status (self-reporting living with HIV or HIV testing in the last 12 months) and secondary outcomes, including use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in the last 12 months, current use of antiretroviral therapy (ART), and met need for contraceptive services. The sampling was stratified on sex and age group, and we analysed data at cluster-level using a two-stage process recommended for CRTs with <15 clusters/arm. A total of 1,989 AYP consented to participate in the survey (50% male); consent was similar across arms (63% consent/arm). Across zones, knowledge of HIV status ranged from 63.6% to 81.2% in intervention zones and 35.4% to 63.0% in control zones. Adjusting for age, sex, and community, knowledge of HIV status was higher in the intervention arm compared to control (73.3% versus 48.4%, respectively, adjusted prevalence ratio (PR) 1.53 95% CI 1.36, 1.72; p < 0.001). By age and sex, results were similar. There was no evidence for impact on any secondary outcomes, including current use of ART and met need for contraceptives. There were no adverse events reported in either arm. A key limitation of our trial is that approximately 35% of the AYP randomly selected for participation in the endline survey could not be reached. CONCLUSIONS: Delivering community-based, peer-led SRH services increased knowledge of HIV status among AYP, both males and females, compared with the control arm. Scaling up the highly effective Yathu Yathu strategy has the potential to make a substantial contribution to increasing access to HIV prevention and care services for young people. However, additional implementation research is needed to understand how to improve uptake of broader SRH services, beyond uptake of HIV testing. TRIAL REGISTRATION: ISRCTN75609016, clinicaltrials.gov number NCT04060420.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Reproductive Health Services , Pregnancy , Female , Humans , Male , Adolescent , Zambia/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Community Health Services/methods , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , HIV Testing , Contraceptive Agents
11.
AIDS Behav ; 27(Suppl 1): 84-93, 2023 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2321431

ABSTRACT

We investigated perceived impacts of COVID-19 on the delivery of adolescent HIV treatment and prevention services in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) by administering a survey to members of the Adolescent HIV Prevention and Treatment Implementation Science Alliance (AHISA) from February to April 2021. We organized COVID-19 impacts, as perceived by AHISA teams, under three themes: service interruptions, service adjustments, and perceived individual-level health impacts. AHISA teams commonly reported interruptions to prevention programs, diagnostic testing, and access to antiretroviral therapy (ART). Common service adjustments included decentralization of ART refills, expanded multi-month ART distribution, and digital technology use. Perceived individual-level impacts included social isolation, loss to follow-up, food insecurity, poverty, and increases in adolescent pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections. The need for collaboration among stakeholders were commonly cited as lessons learned by AHISA teams. Survey findings highlight the need for implementation science research to evaluate the effects of pandemic-related HIV service adaptations in SSA.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Pregnancy , Female , Humans , Adolescent , COVID-19/prevention & control , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/drug therapy , Health Services Accessibility , Anti-Retroviral Agents/therapeutic use
12.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 20(9)2023 04 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2316387

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Women employed by sex work (WESW) have a high risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection and experience economic barriers in accessing care. However, few studies have described their financial lives and the relationship between expenditures and HIV-related behaviors. METHODS: This exploratory study used financial diaries to collect expenditure and income data from WESW in Uganda over 6 months. Data were collected as part of a larger trial that tested the efficacy of an HIV prevention intervention method. Descriptive statistics were used to quantify women's income, relative expenditures, and negative cash balances. Bivariate and multivariate logistic regressions were used to examine the odds of sexual risk behavior or use of HIV medications for several cash scenarios. RESULTS: A total of 163 WESW were enrolled; the participants mean age was 32 years old. Sex work was the sole source of employment for most WESW (99%); their average monthly income was $62.32. Food accounted for the highest proportion of spending (44%) followed by sex work (20%) and housing expenditures (11%). WESW spent the least on health care (5%). Expenditures accounted for a large but variable proportion of these women's income (56% to 101%). Most WESW (74%) experienced a negative cash balance. Some also reported high sex work (28%), health care (24%), and education (28%) costs. The prevalence of condomless sex (77%) and sex with drugs/alcohol (70%) was high compared to use of ART/PrEP (Antiretroviral therapy/Pre-exposure prophylaxis) medications (45%). Women's cash expenditures were not statistically significantly associated with HIV-related behaviors. However, the exploratory study observed a consistent null trend of lower odds of condomless sex (adjusted odds ratio (AOR) = 0.70, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.28-1.70), sex with drugs/alcohol (AOR = 0.93, 95% CI: 0.42-2.05), and use of ART/PrEP (AOR = 0.80, 95% CI: 0.39-1.67) among women who experienced a negative cash balance versus those who did not. Similar trends were observed for other cash scenarios. CONCLUSION: Financial diaries are a feasible tool to assess the economic lives of vulnerable women. Despite having paid work, most WESW encountered a myriad of financial challenges with limited spending on HIV prevention. Financial protections and additional income-generating activities may improve their status. More robust research is needed to understand the potentially complex relationship between income, expenditures, and HIV risk among vulnerable sex workers.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Sex Work , Humans , Female , Adult , Health Expenditures , Uganda/epidemiology , Sexual Behavior , HIV Infections/prevention & control
13.
Lancet HIV ; 10(5): e343-e350, 2023 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2314965

ABSTRACT

New HIV infections and AIDS-related deaths among children and adolescent girls and young women (aged 15-24 years) in eastern and southern Africa continue to occur at unacceptably high rates. The COVID-19 pandemic has also severely undermined ongoing initiatives for HIV prevention and treatment, threatening to set the region back further in its efforts to end AIDS by 2030. Major impediments exist to attaining the UNAIDS 2025 targets among children, adolescent girls, young women, young mothers living with HIV, and young female sex workers residing in eastern and southern Africa. Each population has specific but overlapping needs with regard to diagnosis and linkage to and retention in care. Urgent action is needed to intensify and improve programmes for HIV prevention and treatment, including sexual and reproductive health services for adolescent girls and young women, HIV-positive young mothers, and young female sex workers.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Sex Workers , Adolescent , Female , Humans , Child , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/epidemiology , Pandemics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Africa, Southern/epidemiology
14.
PLoS One ; 18(5): e0281030, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2320785

ABSTRACT

We conducted a mixed-methods study to understand current drug use practices and access to healthcare services for people who use injection drugs in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. We used respondent-driven sampling to recruit 45 people who used injection drugs within the past 6 months from KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. We found high rates of practices that increase HIV/viral hepatitis risk including the use of shared needles (43%) and direct blood injections (bluetoothing) (18%). Despite 35% living with HIV, only 40% accessed antiretroviral therapy within the past year, and one accessed PrEP. None of the participants ever tested for Hepatitis C.


Subject(s)
Drug Users , HIV Infections , Hepatitis C , Humans , South Africa/epidemiology , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Hepatitis C/drug therapy , Hepatitis C/epidemiology , Hepatitis C/prevention & control , Hepacivirus
15.
BMC Infect Dis ; 23(1): 296, 2023 May 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2314458

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has a significant influence on the access to healthcare services. This study aimed to understand the views and experiences of people living with HIV (PLHIV) about barriers to their access to antiretroviral therapy (ART) service in Belu district, Indonesia, during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: This qualitative inquiry employed in-depth interviews to collect data from 21 participants who were recruited using a snowball sampling technique. Data analysis was guided by a thematic framework analysis. RESULTS: The findings showed that fear of contracting COVID-19 was a barrier that impeded participants' access to ART service. Such fear was influenced by their awareness of their vulnerability to the infection, the possibility of unavoidable physical contact in public transport during a travelling to HIV clinic and the widespread COVID-19 infection in healthcare facilities. Lockdowns, COVID-19 restrictions and lack of information about the provision of ART service during the pandemic were also barriers that impeded their access to the service. Other barriers included the mandatory regulation for travellers to provide their COVID-19 vaccine certificate, financial difficulty, and long-distance travel to the HIV clinic. CONCLUSIONS: The findings indicate the need for dissemination of information about the provision of ART service during the pandemic and the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination for the health of PLHIV. The findings also indicate the need for new strategies to bring ART service closer to PLHIV during the pandemic such as a community-based delivery system. Future large-scale studies exploring views and experiences of PLHIV about barriers to their access to ART service during the COVID-19 pandemic and new intervention strategies are recommended.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Humans , Indonesia/epidemiology , Pandemics , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Communicable Disease Control , Anti-Retroviral Agents/therapeutic use , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control
16.
Sex Transm Infect ; 98(7): 525-527, 2022 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2316592

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Adolescents and young adults (AYAs) face difficulties accessing sexual and reproductive health services. These difficulties were exacerbated for a variety of reasons by the COVID-19 pandemic. We document strategies and outcomes implemented at an urban youth sexual health clinic in Florida that allowed uninterrupted provision of services while protecting against spread of COVID-19. METHODS: The plan-do-study-act (PDSA) model was used to implement COVID-19 interventions designed to allow continued service delivery while protecting the health and safety of staff and patients. This method was applied to clinic operations, community referral systems and community outreach to assess and refine interventions within a quick-paced feedback loop. RESULTS: During the COVID-19 pandemic, changes made via PDSA cycles to clinical/navigation services, health communications and youth outreach/engagement effectively responded to AYA needs. Although overall numbers of youth served decreased, all youth contacting the clinic for services were able to be accommodated. Case finding rates for chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis and HIV were similar to pre-pandemic levels. CONCLUSIONS: Quality improvement PDSA initiatives at AYA sexual health clinics, particularly those for underserved youth, can be used to adapt service delivery when normal operating models are disrupted. The ability for youth sexual health clinics to adapt to a changing healthcare landscape will be crucial in ensuring that under-resourced youth are able to receive needed services and ambitious Ending the HIV Epidemic goals are achieved.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Sexual Health , Young Adult , Adolescent , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Quality Improvement , Pandemics/prevention & control , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control
17.
Harm Reduct J ; 20(1): 63, 2023 05 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2314083

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To examine COVID-19 vaccination and HIV transmission among persons who inject drugs (PWID) during the COVID-19 pandemic (2020-2022) in New York City (NYC). METHODS: Two hundred and seventy five PWID were recruited from October 2021 to September 2022. A structured questionnaire was used to measure demographics, drug use behaviors, overdose experiences, substance use treatment history, COVID-19 infection, vaccination, and attitudes. Serum samples were collected for HIV, HCV, and SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) antibody testing. RESULTS: Participants were: 71% male, the mean age was 49 (SD 11), 81% reported at least one COVID-19 immunization, 76% were fully vaccinated and 64% of the unvaccinated had antibodies for COVID-19. Self-reported injection risk behaviors were very low. HIV seroprevalence was 7%. Eighty-nine percent of the HIV seropositive respondents reported knowing they were HIV seropositive and being on antiretroviral therapy prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. There were two likely seroconversions in 518.83 person-years at risk from the March 2020 start of the pandemic to the times of interviews, for an estimated incidence rate of 0.39/100 person-years, 95% Poisson CI 0.05-1.39/100 person-years. CONCLUSIONS: There is concern that the COVID-19 pandemic disruptions to HIV prevention services and the psychological stress of the pandemic may lead to increased risk behavior and increased HIV transmission. These data indicate adaptive/resilient behaviors in both obtaining COVID-19 vaccination and maintaining a low rate of HIV transmission among this sample of PWID during the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic in NYC.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drug Users , HIV Infections , Substance Abuse, Intravenous , Substance-Related Disorders , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Female , Substance Abuse, Intravenous/epidemiology , Substance Abuse, Intravenous/therapy , New York City/epidemiology , Pandemics , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Seroepidemiologic Studies , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , HIV Infections/drug therapy , Substance-Related Disorders/epidemiology
18.
Glob Health Action ; 16(1): 2206207, 2023 12 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2319399

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In the early phase of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, health services were disrupted worldwide, including HIV prevention services. While some studies have begun to document the effects of COVID-19 on HIV prevention, little has been done to qualitatively examine how lockdown measures were experienced and perceived to affect access to HIV prevention methods in sub-Saharan Africa. OBJECTIVES: To explore how the COVID-19 pandemic was perceived to affect access to HIV prevention methods in eastern Zimbabwe. METHOD: This article draws on qualitative data from the first three data collection points (involving telephone interviews, group discussions, and photography) of a telephone and WhatsApp-enabled digital ethnography. Data were collected from 11 adolescent girls and young women and five men over a 5-month period (March-July 2021). The data were analysed thematically. RESULTS: Participants reported widespread interruption to their condom supply when beerhalls were shut down as part of a nationwide lockdown. Restrictions in movement meant that participants who could afford to buy condoms from larger supermarkets or pharmacies were unable to. Additionally, the police reportedly refused to issue letters granting permission to travel for the purpose of accessing HIV prevention services. The COVID-19 pandemic was also described to obstruct the demand (fear of COVID-19, movement restrictions) and supply (de-prioritised, stock-outs) for HIV prevention services. Nonetheless, under certain formal and informal circumstances, such as accessing other and more prioritised health services, or 'knowing the right people', some participants were able to access HIV prevention methods. CONCLUSION: People at risk of HIV experienced the COVID-19 epidemic in Zimbabwe as disruptive to access to HIV prevention methods. While the disruptions were temporary, they were long enough to catalyse local responses, and to highlight the need for future pandemic response capacities to circumvent a reversal of hard-won gains in HIV prevention.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , HIV Infections , Male , Adolescent , Female , Humans , Condoms , Zimbabwe/epidemiology , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Disease Control , Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/epidemiology
19.
Cad Saude Publica ; 39Suppl 1(Suppl 1): e00154021, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2309715

ABSTRACT

Adolescent men who have sex with men (AMSM) are at a heightened vulnerability for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). This study aimed to estimate the prevalence of HIV and associated individual, social, and programmatic factors among AMSM in Salvador, Bahia State, Brazil. This is a cross-sectional study which analyzed baseline data from the PrEP1519 cohort in Salvador. Descriptive, bivariate, and multivariate analyses were conducted using the dimensions of vulnerability to HIV as hierarchical levels of analysis. Logistic regression models were used to estimate the odds ratios (OR) of the association between predictor variables and HIV infection. The prevalence of HIV infection among the 288 AMSM recruited to the project was 5.9% (95%CI: 3.7-9.3). Adjusted analysis showed a statistically significant association between self-identifying as a sex worker (OR = 3.74, 95%CI: 1.03-13.60) and HIV infection. Other associations with borderline statistical significance were the use of application programs to find sexual partners (OR = 3.30, 95%CI: 0.98-11.04), low schooling level (OR = 3.59, 95%CI: 0.96-13.41), failing to be hired or being dismissed from a job because of sexual orientation (OR = 2.88, 95%CI: 0.89-9.28), and not using health services as a usual source of care (OR = 3.14, 95%CI: 0.97-10.17). We found a high HIV prevalence among AMSM in Salvador. Furthermore, our study found that individual, social, and programmatic factors were associated with HIV infection among these AMSM. We recommend intensifying HIV combined-prevention activities for AMSM.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Sexual and Gender Minorities , Humans , Male , Adolescent , Female , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/prevention & control , HIV , Homosexuality, Male , Brazil/epidemiology , Prevalence , Cross-Sectional Studies , Sexual Behavior , Risk Factors
20.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 29(3): 609-613, 2023 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2294197

ABSTRACT

During October 2016-March 2022, Uganda increased tuberculosis (TB) preventive therapy coverage among persons living with HIV from 0.6% to 88.8%. TB notification rates increased from 881.1 to 972.5 per 100,000 persons living with HIV. Timely TB screening, diagnosis, and earlier treatment should remain high priorities for TB/HIV prevention programming.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , HIV Infections , Tuberculosis , Humans , Tuberculosis/diagnosis , Uganda , Mass Screening , HIV Infections/prevention & control
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