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Piecing Together the HIV Prevention Puzzle
Date:5/17/2009

>"We hope to have new prevention intervention pieces to add to the puzzle in the next few years," said Warren. "But as the slow implementation of male circumcision to reduce heterosexual men's risk of HIV infection reminds us, we need extensive planning and guidance to ensure research results are translated into real impact against the epidemic. We can't afford to wait for efficacy results before we begin to plan. We must anticipate and tackle the major hurdles for implementation now."

The Report identifies major issues for implementation of new prevention options, including:

  • Ongoing global failures to scale up access to HIV testing and counseling services.
  • Persistent inattention to the needs of gay men and other men who have sex with men around the world.
  • Gaps in health care infrastructure that will complicate introduction of any new strategy.

In the Report, AVAC also underscores the importance of WHO and UNAIDS getting involved in planning for the results from PrEP trials before data are available.

"WHO and UNAIDS, along with other stakeholders, need to combine their strengths now to provide leadership and coordination so that the world is ready to work with results from the many ongoing PrEP trials," said Warren.

Positive results from current vaccine, PrEP and microbicide trials will also present challenges and opportunities for other ongoing and planned HIV prevention trials.

"There has been concern that positive results from PrEP trials would require vaccine or microbicide trials to become larger, longer and more expensive, as PrEP could become a standard of prevention in these trials," said Warren. "But we believe that success in one trial will open up possibilities and options for research that could combine AIDS vaccines and other interventions as they emerge."<
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SOURCE AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition
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