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 A promising target for kidney fibrosis
21.04.2017 | Brigham and Women's Hospital

nachricht Stem cell transplants: activating signal paths may protect from graft-versus-host disease
20.04.2017 | Technische Universität München

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: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA's Fermi catches gamma-ray flashes from tropical storms

25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers invent process to make sustainable rubber, plastics

25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Transfecting cells gently – the LZH presents a GNOME prototype at the Labvolution 2017

25.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>