In 2018, the global distribution of new HIV infections in 2018 crossed a threshold: the majority of global new infections were among key populations and their sexual partners. This change is a result of the strong progress in settings with high HIV prevalence in eastern and southern Africa, combi
SOAR researchers assessed a community-based program that provided female sex workers with mobile or home-based ART services. The findings demonstrate that the community-based model can lead to higher ART initiation and retention rates, and better adherence compared to standard facility-based ART provision. As countries aim to reach the 95–95–95 targets, national HIV responses must expand their strategies to effectively provide ART services, particularly to hard-to-reach key populations.
Sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) has the highest number of people living with HIV/AIDS, with Nigeria, South Africa, and Uganda accounting for 48% of new infections. A systematic review of the HIV burden among women engaged in sex work (WESW) in 50 low- and middle-income countries found that they had increased odds of HIV infection relative to the general female population. Social structural factors, such as the sex work environment, violence, stigma, cultural issues, and criminalization of sex work are critical in shaping sexually transmitted infection (STI)/HIV risks among WESW and their clients in Uganda. Poverty is the most commonly cited reason for involvement in sex work in SSA. Against this backdrop, this study protocol describes a randomized controlled trial (RCT) that tests the impact of adding economic empowerment to traditional HIV risk reduction (HIVRR) to reduce new incidence of STIs and HIV among WESW in Rakai and the greater Masaka regions in Uganda.
The LINKAGES project first started working in Burundi in August 2016 to reduce HIV transmission among key populations and improve their enrollment and retention in care and treatment. Within the past three years, LINKAGES Burundi has consistently experienced high rates of linking newly diagnosed HIV-positive female sex workers, men who have sex with men, and transgender people to care and treatment. Between the first quarter of FY18 and the second quarter of FY19, the average rates for linkage to antiretroviral treatment were 98 percent among FSWs, 96 percent among MSM, and 100 percent among transgender people. This blog outlines the five “secrets” LINKAGES Burundi credits for their success.