Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Report proposes new research agenda on pregnancy intentions of HIV-positive women

14.07.2010
Stronger evidence base needed for researchers, program implementers, policymakers and advocates

A report issued by the Program on International Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health proposes a new research agenda to address the sexual and reproductive health and rights of HIV-positive women.

"The Pregnancy Intentions of HIV-Positive Women: Forwarding the Research Agenda," identifies key gaps in current knowledge, and urges a multi-disciplinary research approach to help HIV-positive women stay healthy and shape their families.

Read the full report and a shorter document that highlights the most pressing research priorities.

"Women living with HIV, like all women, have the right to determine the number and spacing of their children," said Sofia Gruskin, Director of Harvard's Program on International Health and Human Rights. "There is a clear and urgent need for more research into how women are counseled and the services that are made available to them."

The research recommendations stem from a conference and symposium convened in March 2010, at the Harvard School of Public Health, one of the first to bring together representatives from across disciplines and experiences on this issue. The more than 60 participants came from diverse country contexts and are engaged in a range of HIV/AIDS and sexual and reproductive health and rights related work.

The resulting report documents current knowledge and gaps in the following areas: desired pregnancy for HIV-positive women; HIV-positive women seeking to prevent pregnancy; safer pregnancy for HIV-positive women; and pregnancy termination for HIV-positive women. It then proposes a research agenda designed to provide advocates, health professionals, program implementers, and policy makers with the tools they need to promote and protect HIV-positive women's ability to achieve their pregnancy intentions.

Women of childbearing age now represent nearly half of the 38.6 million people living with HIV today. To date, research on HIV and pregnancy has generally assumed that women living in resource-limited settings who are HIV-positive will no longer want to bear children. However, with the dramatic increase in access to antiretroviral treatment (ART), there is a much greater likelihood of preventing transmission of the virus from mother to child, and a clear desire by many HIV-positive women in these settings to pursue options for having children.

"The face of the global HIV epidemic has changed over the past decade, and our research agenda must reflect this new demographic reality," said Manjula Lusti-Narasimhan, a scientist for the Department of Reproductive Health and Research at the World Health Organization, which co-sponsored the conference. "We must gather the data and evidence to help us put these women at the center of decision-making on their sexual and reproductive health."

The proposed research agenda addresses the issue from a number of overlapping areas, including from the women, the community, the health system, and the larger legal and policy context. Research recommendations include:

- Addressing HIV-positive women's contraception-related needs.

- Exploring the ways in which different forms of HIV testing and counseling influence sustained engagement of HIV-positive women with health services.

- Determining the health of mother and infant in the post-partum period with and without continuous access to treatment and care.

- Documenting the scope and impact of forced sterilization of HIV-positive women in different settings.

- Comparing the appropriateness of various service delivery models, including those that integrate HIV care with sexual and reproductive health services.

- Exploring the mechanisms to enhance the knowledge of providers and promote their subsequent communication of relevant information to HIV-positive women and their partners.

- Investigating the potential role of community, including the role of traditional birth attendants, as a link to women living with HIV and between community and clinical care locally and nationally.

- Measuring the impacts of stigma, discrimination and violence.

- Exploring the larger impacts of the legal and policy context on access to information and health services for women living with HIV and their partners.

- Assessing the effective application and leveraging of health and human rights frameworks.

The report urges that research on the pregnancy intentions of HIV-positive women should involve women and their partners at all stages, and take a multi-disciplinary approach to help HIV-positive women stay healthy and shape their families. It also concludes that a stronger evidence base – including results from biomedical, operational, policy, and human rights research – will provide more comprehensive information relevant to the lives of women and men living with HIV, and create demand for appropriate services and policy changes.

"Researchers, program implementers, and advocacy groups must combine efforts to ensure that there are adequate resources to conduct this research, to design studies across relevant disciplines, and to disseminate important findings," added Gruskin.

Visit the HSPH website for the latest news, press releases and multimedia offerings.

Harvard School of Public Health (http://www.hsph.harvard.edu ) is dedicated to advancing the public's health through learning, discovery, and communication. More than 400 faculty members are engaged in teaching and training the 1,000-plus student body in a broad spectrum of disciplines crucial to the health and well being of individuals and populations around the world. Programs and projects range from the molecular biology of AIDS vaccines to the epidemiology of cancer; from risk analysis to violence prevention; from maternal and children's health to quality of care measurement; from health care management to international health and human rights. For more information on the school visit: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu

Todd Datz | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.hsph.harvard.edu

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht Biofilm discovery suggests new way to prevent dangerous infections
23.05.2017 | University of Texas at Austin

nachricht Another reason to exercise: Burning bone fat -- a key to better bone health
19.05.2017 | University of North Carolina Health Care

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Strathclyde-led research develops world's highest gain high-power laser amplifier

The world's highest gain high power laser amplifier - by many orders of magnitude - has been developed in research led at the University of Strathclyde.

The researchers demonstrated the feasibility of using plasma to amplify short laser pulses of picojoule-level energy up to 100 millijoules, which is a 'gain'...

Im Focus: Can the immune system be boosted against Staphylococcus aureus by delivery of messenger RNA?

Staphylococcus aureus is a feared pathogen (MRSA, multi-resistant S. aureus) due to frequent resistances against many antibiotics, especially in hospital infections. Researchers at the Paul-Ehrlich-Institut have identified immunological processes that prevent a successful immune response directed against the pathogenic agent. The delivery of bacterial proteins with RNA adjuvant or messenger RNA (mRNA) into immune cells allows the re-direction of the immune response towards an active defense against S. aureus. This could be of significant importance for the development of an effective vaccine. PLOS Pathogens has published these research results online on 25 May 2017.

Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus) is a bacterium that colonizes by far more than half of the skin and the mucosa of adults, usually without causing infections....

Im Focus: A quantum walk of photons

Physicists from the University of Würzburg are capable of generating identical looking single light particles at the push of a button. Two new studies now demonstrate the potential this method holds.

The quantum computer has fuelled the imagination of scientists for decades: It is based on fundamentally different phenomena than a conventional computer....

Im Focus: Turmoil in sluggish electrons’ existence

An international team of physicists has monitored the scattering behaviour of electrons in a non-conducting material in real-time. Their insights could be beneficial for radiotherapy.

We can refer to electrons in non-conducting materials as ‘sluggish’. Typically, they remain fixed in a location, deep inside an atomic composite. It is hence...

Im Focus: Wafer-thin Magnetic Materials Developed for Future Quantum Technologies

Two-dimensional magnetic structures are regarded as a promising material for new types of data storage, since the magnetic properties of individual molecular building blocks can be investigated and modified. For the first time, researchers have now produced a wafer-thin ferrimagnet, in which molecules with different magnetic centers arrange themselves on a gold surface to form a checkerboard pattern. Scientists at the Swiss Nanoscience Institute at the University of Basel and the Paul Scherrer Institute published their findings in the journal Nature Communications.

Ferrimagnets are composed of two centers which are magnetized at different strengths and point in opposing directions. Two-dimensional, quasi-flat ferrimagnets...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Marine Conservation: IASS Contributes to UN Ocean Conference in New York on 5-9 June

24.05.2017 | Event News

AWK Aachen Machine Tool Colloquium 2017: Internet of Production for Agile Enterprises

23.05.2017 | Event News

Dortmund MST Conference presents Individualized Healthcare Solutions with micro and nanotechnology

22.05.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

New photocatalyst speeds up the conversion of carbon dioxide into chemical resources

29.05.2017 | Life Sciences

NASA's SDO sees partial eclipse in space

29.05.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New drug reduces transplant and mortality rates significantly in patients with hepatitis C

29.05.2017 | Statistics

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>