2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence

Workshop on HIV Adolescence

The 2nd International Conference on HIV and Adolescence took place in Cape Town, South Africa, from 10-12 October.

The medical advances that have transformed HIV treatment into a manageable disease have yet to alter the stark reality for young people, particularly in low- and middle-income countries, such as those in sub-Saharan Africa and young people within key populations. Even as AIDS-related mortality has decreased overall in recent years, AIDS-related deaths among adolescents increased by 50%. AIDS, in other words, is far from over - especially for young people.


At major meetings, advances in HIV management focuses mainly on either adults or children, leaving out this key group of individuals – the adolescents. To meet this need for international interchange in order to bring the field forward, the International Workshop on HIV & Adolescence: challenges and solutions was set up as an inclusive summit for multidisciplinary experts working with adolescents affected by HIV. The objective was to share experiences, knowledge and best practices with the aim of defining a pathway forward for optimizing care for adolescents living with HIV.

The program covered the entire spectrum of developmental changes in adolescents including social, behavioral, physiological and biological aspects and the impact of an HIV positive status. Prevention programs, testing, treatment and support services among adolescents will also be discussed. The barriers encountered in delivering these services and ways to mitigate these barriers will be further key areas of discussion during the workshop.

Presentations, video recordings and the abstract book are available here.

October 10, 2018
Year of publication
Resource types
adolescent health, adolescents, adolescent HIV, adolescent treatment services, 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence
BOHT demo

Edutainment activities for treatment adherence

This four-minute video of a participatory demonstration by Bridges of Hope Training of some 'edutainment' activities around treatment adherence was taken during the 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence. Visit the Bridges of Hope Training website for other videos and more about the training program.
Youth Reference Group

Youth voices from the 2nd International Workshop on HIV Adolescence

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.

The youth tipping point: opportunities and challenges

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.
unati dikani

Adolescent-focused research and development: an imperative on all fronts

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.

The effect of community-based support for caregivers on the risk of virological failure in children and adolescents with HIV in Harare, Zimbabwe (ZENITH): an open-label, randomised controlled trial

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.

Research ethics committees in a tight spot: Approving consent strategies for child research that are prima facie illegal but are ethical in terms of national guidelines

It is an internationally accepted principle that ethics norms should be applied and enforced in research with humans through ethics review by research ethics committees (RECs). This places RECs at the very heart of the system for protecting participants and enforcing their rights. In the South African ethical-legal framework for child research, there are divergent approaches to consent - from mandatory parental consent for child research, which limits the authority for proxy consent to parents and legal guardians, to self-consent by older adolescents, provided certain conditions are met, and consent by a range of parental substitutes where there are no available parents or legal guardians.
Understanding clinical trials

Animated video: Understanding Clinical Trials

This animation explains what clinical trials are, how they are conducted, and why they are important for patients. The animation also provides an overview of study design, eligibility criteria, informed consent, safeguards, different phases of clinical trials, and the potential benefits and potential risks of participation.
Journal of Adolescent Health

Inclusion of Adolescents in Clinical Trials for Sexually Transmitted Infections: A Review of Existing Registered Studies

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.

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