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The latest international news, analysis and features on the HIV epidemic from Avert. Share your views and expertise with your peers in the comments box below the articles.

30 September 2014

Increased risk of age-related diseases for HIV positive populations

Huge advances have been made in treating HIV leading to an increased life expectancy for people infected by HIV. Although, recent studies of older HIV positive generations highlight the additional challenges these populations face. A study presented at the 2014 International AIDS conference has found that people living with HIV (PLWHIV) have been found to be at greater risk of suffering from age-related diseases than HIV-negative infected individuals.

26 September 2014

PLHIV have lower health quality of life despite treatment

People living with HIV (PLHIV) who are on antiretroviral treatment (ART) and have achieved viral suppression, still have a lower health-related quality-of-life (HRQoL) than those in the general population. Data from the UK shows that despite life expectancy for PLHIV nearly equalling the general population, morbidity is still an important issue.

24 September 2014

New progresses for infant HIV vaccine development

Researchers at Duke University recently announced that they might have found a breakthrough in the development of an HIV vaccine for infants. After reanalysing findings from two historic paediatric HIV vaccine trials performed in the 1990s, evidence was found that it might be possible to develop a vaccine to prevent HIV transmission form mother-to-child during breastfeeding.

19 September 2014

Global summit focuses on HIV treatment targets as the way forward

Global leaders, leading academics, policy makers and people in the treatment industry and the HIV community are meeting in London this week for the annual summit, Controlling the HIV Epidemic with Antiretrovirals: Avoiding the Cost of Inaction. These stakeholders have all rallied behind the idea that ending the AIDS epidemic as a global health threat is possible, and within reach, if resources are pooled effectively.

17 September 2014

HIV self-testing effective for reaching MSM in China

Self-testing for HIV can be an effective way of increasing uptake of HIV testing and reaching high risk sub-groups of men who have sex with men (MSM) in China. An online survey conducted in China, found that 20.3 percent of MSM in the country had self-tested for HIV at least once in their lives.

15 September 2014

HIV positive mothers likely to stop treatment after delivery

A new study has found that mothers living with HIV in South Africa often discontinue HIV care after their child is born and has tested negative for HIV, because they perceive their own health as unimportant. The study sought to understand the challenges facing HIV positive woman during the postpartum period, and why there is such a low retention of care. Although barriers for retention in care among HIV positive adults in sub-Saharan Africa are well known.

12 September 2014

The war on drugs has failed: Global Commission on Drug Policy launches new report

The Global Commission on Drug Policy met this week in New York for the launch their new report, Taking Control: pathways to drug policies that work. The report calls on world leaders and policymakers to re-think and reform global drug policy, moving away from the ‘war on drugs’ stance, which they argue has failed, to a stance focused on human rights and access to healthcare.

10 September 2014

Visceral leishmaniasis-HIV co-infection an emerging global health issue

Visceral leishmaniasis-HIV (VL/HIV) co-infection is an emerging global health issue, prominent in Africa, and on the rise in South America and India. Visceral leishmaniasis (VL) is a disease that develops from the leishmaniasis parasite, which is transmitted via the bite of a sand fly.

09 September 2014

Drugs shortage in free antiretroviral treatment programs in India

HIV drug shortages in India over the past few months have meant that many people living with HIV (PLHIV) are unable to access antiretroviral treatment (ART) through government run distribution centres. Thousands of PLHIV rely on the free ART provided by India’s National AIDS Control Organization (NACO), however they are facing drug shortfalls that are largely blamed on supply bottlenecks, late payments to pharmaceutical companies and Indian manufacturers boycotting the process.

05 September 2014

Targeting high-risk groups with HIV prevention services cost-effective for public health

Large-scale HIV prevention programmes targeted at high-risk populations can be enormously cost-effective for public health, according to new research conducted on the Avahan HIV prevention programme in India.