Age-of-consent laws can be a barrier to adolescents accessing relevant HIV/AIDS services. This study provides new evidence that a lower legal age of consent could address this barrier, especially in countries with more restrictive legislation, and increase HIV testing and counselling uptake.
While young people in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) are at greatest risk of HIV acquisition, uptake of HIV prevention interventions among them has been limited. Interventions delivered through social connections have changed behaviour in many settings, but not to date in SSA. There is little systematic evidence on whom young SSA adults turn to for advice. We therefore conducted an exploratory cross-sectional study from whom young rural South Africans received support and sexual behaviour-specific advice.
This two-part webinar series will share the findings from formative research (Part 1) and intervention research (Part 2) on the important topic of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), as presented by the Microbicide Product Introduction Initiative (MPii)
Through the many presentations, activities and events during the three days of the 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence: Challenges and Solutions, the emphasis on youth involvement was highlighted consistently. It is through this lens that SHARE staff reflect on thoughts from youth participants before its closing.
Looking at where we have come from, and where we are in southern Africa’s fight against HIV, it is clear that we have had some monumental successes and some incredible failures along the way, both of which we can learn from to do better. One clear theme throughout the first day of the 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence: Challenges and Solutions was that we have not consistently and adequately gained the insights of the very people who are enrolled in studies to generate evidence on how to address the needs of these populations. Further, we have not committed the resources required to conduct the research on the populations that are difficult to reach, whether due to challenging ethical enrolment or stigma and criminalization of key populations.
Despite the fact that people under the age of 18 make up about 25% of the global population, research among adolescents has been a neglected area. We know that it is important to conduct research among pediatric and adolescent populations, but to date the focus has remained on adults. Just how significant the risks are of not including adolescents in clinical trials emerged as a key theme at the 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence, as well as the logistical, ethical, legal, justice, and human rights considerations that need to be taken into account when designing and implementing research involving adolescents.
Children and adolescents have poorer HIV treatment outcomes than adults. We aimed to assess the effect of community-based support for caregivers of HIV-infected children and adolescents, who are key mediators to children engaging with care, on treatment outcomes.
Despite their heightened risk of sexually transmitted infections, minor adolescents (<18 years old) are often excluded from clinical trials. The results of trials of adults should not be assumed to generalize to minors.