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Toward HIV Epidemic Control: Lessons from Research to Practice
February 14, 2022

Satellite Session held at the 9th SA AIDS Conference on 11 June 2019


Objective:  The workshop featured connections between the PopART study and the South Africa HIV program objectives to increase people living with HIV (PLHIV) on treatment and reduce HIV incidence. Population Effects of Antiretroviral Therapy to Reduce HIV Transmission (PopART) is a cluster-randomized trial of the impact of a combination prevention package on population-level HIV incidence in Zambia and South Africa.

The prevention interventions included universal voluntary HIV counseling and testing provided at household level, linkage of HIV infected individuals to care and early initiation of antiretroviral therapy (ART) for all those testing HIV-positive. To measure the impact of the intervention, a Population Cohort, consisting of a representative sample of approximately 2,300 adults aged 18–44 years, was recruited from the general population of each of the 21 communities (an overall total of 48,500 across all communities) and was followed up once a year for three years to measure HIV incidence and other outcomes.

The South Africa PEPFAR program and the South Africa National Department of Health are currently involved in an intensive program improvement effort, known as Siyenza, with a goal to significantly increase the numbers of PLHIV on treatment and increase the PLHIV retained in care.

The workshop described the PopART study and considered what results and program implementation lessons from the PopART study can help inform the Siyenza initiative and the scale-up of HIV treatment. The workshop featured an “expo” session with practical demonstrations of current tools.

Session themes include:

  • Community Engagement to Increase PLHIV on Treatment
  • Efforts to Reach Target Populations

Specific areas include:

  • PopART Primary Results and Implementation Lessons
  • Siyenza HIV Treatment Acceleration Results and PEPFAR CHW Support
  • NDOH 10-Point Plan
  • PopART Experience with Community Workers/CHIPS:  Impact, and Practical Lessons Learned
  • City of Cape Town Experience with Enablers and Barriers to “External” Projects Embedding in Government Systems
  • Linkage to HIV Treatment (Linkage Officers and Linkage Initiatives)
  • Adherence and Retention – Adherence Clubs and Support Groups
  • Reaching Men (PopART)
  • Reaching Men and Reaching Youth (Adolescents/AGYW)
  • Increasing HIV Testing Among Men
  • Extended Hours, Youth Zones, and Welcome Back Campaign (NDOH)
  • Drug Delivery and Pick-Up Points

Note: Report of the meeting to be made available soon.