In November, Department of Global Health student Tikhala Itaye presented at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD), a high-level conference held in Nairobi and co-organized by the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the governments of Kenya and Denmark.
In sub-Saharan Africa, many young women and adolescent girls are at high risk of HIV infection. In a new research paper published in the open access journal PLOS Medicine, Kenneth Mugwanya and co-authors report on a study aiming to investigate the feasibility of providing antiretroviral drugs via family planning clinics to prevent HIV infection in young women.
In a study of open-label Truvada as daily pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to prevent HIV among 427 young African women and adolescent girls, 95% initiated the HIV prevention strategy, and most used PrEP for the first three months. However, PrEP use fell among participants in this critical population during a year of follow-up clinic visits, although HIV incidence at 12 months was low. The preliminary results suggest that tailored, evidence-based adherence support strategies may be needed to durably engage young African women in consistent PrEP use.