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Lema I.A.,Familia Salama Trial Unit | Sando D.,Familia Salama Trial Unit | Magesa L.,Familia Salama Trial Unit | Machumi L.,Familia Salama Trial Unit | And 13 more authors.
Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes | Year: 2014

Methods: Over a 16-month period, we carried out a quantitative evaluation of the performance of CHW in reaching women early in pregnancy and before they have attended ANC in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.Background: Home visits by community health workers (CHW) could be effective in identifying pregnant women in the community before they have presented to the health system. CHW could thus improve the uptake of antenatal care (ANC), HIV testing, and prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services.Results: As part of the intervention, 213 CHW conducted more than 45,000 home visits to about 43,000 pregnant women. More than 75% of the pregnant women identified through home visits had not yet attended ANC at the time of the first contact with a CHW and about 40% of those who had not yet attended ANC were in the first trimester of pregnancy. Over time, the number of pregnant women the CHW identified each month increased, as did the proportion of women who had not yet attended ANC. The median gestational age of pregnant women contacted for the first time by a CHW decreased steadily and significantly over time (from 21/22 to 16 weeks, P-value for test of trend <0.0001).Conclusions: A large-scale CHW intervention was effective in identifying pregnant women in their homes early in pregnancy and before they had attended ANC. The intervention thus fulfills some of the conditions that are necessary for CHW to improve timely ANC uptake and early HIV testing and PMTCT enrollment in pregnancy. Copyright © 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source


Kendall T.,Harvard University | Barnighausen T.,Harvard University | Barnighausen T.,Wellcome Trust Africa Center for Health and Population Studies | Fawzi W.W.,Harvard University | Langer A.,Harvard University
Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes | Year: 2014

This themed supplement to JAIDS: Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes focuses on the critical intersections between HIV, reproductive, and maternal health services in the health systems of sub-Saharan Africa. The epidemiology of HIV among women of reproductive age on the sub-continent demands a holistic conceptualization and comprehensive approaches to ensure that HIV, reproductive, and maternal health are optimally addressed. Yet, in many instances, the national and global responses to these health issues remain siloed. Women's health needs and new global and national guidelines for HIV treatment raise important policy, programmatic, and operational questions regarding service integration, scaleup, and health systems functioning. In June 2013, the Maternal Health Task Force at the Harvard School of Public Health, the United States Agency for International Development, and the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention convened an international technical meeting of researchers, policymakers, and practitioners to discuss the existing evidence base about the interconnections between HIV, reproductive, and maternal health and identify the most important knowledge gaps and research priorities. The articles in this special issue deepen and expand on those discussions by (1) providing empirical evidence about challenges, (2) identifying how improving clinical care and models of service delivery, strengthening health systems, and addressing social dynamics can contribute to better outcomes, and (3) mapping future research directions. Together, these articles underscore that new policy frameworks and integrated approaches are necessary but not sufficient to address health system challenges. Addressing the multiple needs of women of reproductive age who are living with HIV or are at risk of acquiring HIV is a complex undertaking that requires improved access to, utilization and quality of comprehensive women's healthcare. Continued evaluation and knowledge generation are needed to ensure that potential health gains are actualized. Copyright © 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source


Oldenburg C.E.,Harvard University | Perez-Brumer A.G.,The New School | Reisner S.L.,The Fenway Institute | Mayer K.,Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center | And 3 more authors.
Global Public Health | Year: 2016

Laws and policies can affect the HIV risk of key populations through a number of direct and indirect pathways. We investigated the association between HIV prevalence among men who engage in transactional sex and language in the penal code protecting sexual minorities, including men who have sex with men (MSM), and sex workers. HIV prevalence among men who engage in transactional sex was assessed through meta-analysis of published literature and country surveillance reports. Meta-regression was used to determine the association between HIV prevalence and protective laws for sexual minorities and sex workers. Sixty-six reports representing 28 countries and 31,924 individuals were included in the meta-analysis. Controlling for multiple study- and country-level variables, legal protection for sexual minorities was associated with a 10.9% (95% CI: 3.8–18.0%) and sex workers associated with a 7.0% (95% CI: 1.3–12.8%) decrease in country-level HIV prevalence among men who engage in transactional sex. Laws that seek to actively protect sex workers and MSM may be necessary to decrease HIV risk for this key population. © 2016 Taylor & Francis Source


Hope R.,Boston University | Kendall T.,Boston University | Langer A.,Boston University | Barnighausen T.,Boston University | Barnighausen T.,Wellcome Trust Africa Center for Health and Population Studies
Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes | Year: 2014

Objective: Both sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services and HIV programs in sub-Saharan Africa are typically delivered vertically, operating parallel to national health systems. The objective of this study was to map the evidence on national and international strategies for integration of SRH and HIV services in sub-Saharan Africa and to develop a research agenda for future health systems integration.Methods: We examined the literature on national and international strategies to integrate SRH and HIV services using a scoping study methodology. Current policy frameworks, national HIV strategies and research, and gray literature on integration were mapped. Five countries in sub-Saharan Africa with experience of integrating SRH and HIV services were purposively sampled for detailed thematic analysis, according to the health systems functions of governance, policy and planning, financing, health workforce organization, service organization, and monitoring and evaluation.Results: The major international health policies and donor guidance now support integration. Most integration research has focused on linkages of SRH and HIV front-line services. Yet, the common problems with implementation are related to delayed or incomplete integration of higher level health systems functions: lack of coordinated leadership and unified national integration policies; separate financing streams for SRH and HIV services and inadequate health worker training, supervision and retention.Conclusions: Rigorous health systems research on the integration of SRH and HIV services is urgently needed. Priority research areas include integration impact, performance, and economic evaluation to inform the planning, financing, and coordination of integrated service delivery. Copyright © 2014 by Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. Source


Otieno G.,Kenya Medical Research Institute | Otieno G.,U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention | Otieno G.,University of Witwatersrand | Marinda E.,University of Witwatersrand | And 3 more authors.
Population Health Metrics | Year: 2015

Background: South Africa has continued to receive increasing attention due to unprecedented high levels of violence. Homicide-related violence accounts for a significant proportion of unnatural deaths and contributes significantly to loss of years of expected life. We investigated levels and factors associated with homicide-related deaths and identify communities with excessively high homicide risk in a typical rural South African population. Method: Data drawn from verbal autopsies conducted on all deaths recorded during annual demographic and health surveillance in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa were used to derive the cumulative probability of death from homicide over a nine-year period (2000-2008). Weibull regression methods were used to investigate factors associated with homicide deaths. A Kulldorff spatial scan statistic was used to identify spatial clusters of homicide-related deaths. Results: With 536 homicide-related deaths, and a median seven years of follow-up, the study found an overall homicide incidence rate of 66 deaths per 100, 000 person-years of observation (PYOs) (95 % CI 60-72) for the period under study. Death related to the use of firearms was the leading reported method of homicide (65 %) and most deaths occurred over weekends (43 %). Homicides are the second-most common cause of death in men aged 25-34 after HIV-related deaths (including TB) in this community, at 210 deaths per 100,000 PYOs, and was highest among 55-64 year old women, at 78 deaths per 100,000 PYOs. Residency status, age, socioeconomic status, and highest education level attained independently predicted the risk of homicide death. The spatial distribution of homicide deaths was not homogenous and the study identified two clear geographical clusters with significantly elevated homicide risk. Conclusion: The high rates of homicide observed in this typical rural South African population - particularly among men - underscore the need for urgent interventions to reduce this tragic and theoretically preventable loss of life in this population and similar South African settings. © 2015 Otieno et al. Source

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