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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.

23 October 2015

South Africa exceeds national mother-to-child transmission target

HIV transmission from mother-to-child (MTCT) in South Africa fell to just 1.5% in 2015.

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11 September 2015

UK: Calls for PrEP to be available on National Health Service

Leading HIV and AIDS organisations have called for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) to be made available on the UK’s National Health Service (NHS).

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28 August 2015

Mental health assessments recommended for people seeking PEP

Many people who use PEP for HIV are also highly likely to have a mental health issue, according to new research published in AIDS and Behaviour this month. 

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11 August 2015

US HIV strategy highlights role of PrEP

The United States government has released an updated National HIV/AIDS Strategy, which sets out the country’s priorities to combat HIV for the next five years.

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01 July 2015

Cuba eliminates mother to child transmission of HIV

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has confirmed that Cuba is officially the first country to eliminate mother to child transmission of HIV (MTCT). Cuba has been working with WHO and the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) since 2010 as part of a regional programme to eliminate both MTCT and syphilis. Elimination in this sense means ‘a reduction of transmission to such a low level that it no longer constitutes a public health problem.’

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30 April 2015

Increased risk of HIV immediately following circumcision

Men who have undergone circumcision are at increased risk of infecting female partners with HIV immediately following surgery suggests research from the Johns Hopkins University and the Rakai Health Sciences Program in Uganda. Male circumcision is used as an HIV prevention method as it is known to reduce the of heterosexually acquired HIV infection in men by 60%.

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23 April 2015

Best results for women when using PrEP daily

Woman who take daily pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) adhere significantly better than woman who take PrEP only twice a week, or before and after sex, as suggested by findings from the HIV Prevention Trials Network (HPTN) 067 trial.

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21 April 2015

Should PrEP be rolled out worldwide?

Multiple randomised controlled trials have proven that the use of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) significantly reduces the risk of HIV among people at risk. Despite its proven efficacy, PrEP is not widely implemented as an HIV prevention tool. With nearly two million new HIV infections last year, it would seem that PrEP is being overlooked, as commented by a group of scientists in last week editions of The Lancet.

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01 April 2015

OST positively affects treatment adherence for people who inject drugs

People living with HIV who inject drugs have a 68% increase in the odds of refilling their antiretroviral treatment (ART) prescriptions after being exposed to opioid substitution therapy (OST). The research, published ahead of print in the journal AIDS, gives further evidence to the benefits of OST, particularly for ART adherence.

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27 March 2015

Trial studies likely to fail if community not actively involved in study set up

A recently published study about the failure of the Vaginal and Oral Interventions to Control the Epidemic (VOICE) trial in the New England Journal of Medicine, argues that the negative outcome of the study was not associated with the non-effectiveness of the product, but the participants deceit and lack of compliance. The VOICE trial was abruptly stopped after independent safety monitors concluded that the women who were given the pills and vaginal gels containing antiretrovirals (ARVs) were becoming infected at the same rate as women who were given a placebo.

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