Prevention Pays Off in Rakai

An HIV prevention combination strategy in Rakai, Uganda coincided with a 42% drop in new HIV infections, according to a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Tracking all program phases from 2000-2016, the study, led by Johns Hopkins University's Bloomberg School of Public Health and School of Medicine researchers, supplies evidence of population-level effects. The US-funded prevention program included HIV counseling and testing, voluntary male circumcision, anti-AIDS drugs, condoms, and behavior change interventions.

The Quote: "When I started doing research at Rakai in the late 1980s, about a third of people in the trading centers were HIV positive, and there was little we could do to prevent a further spread of the virus," said Maria Wawer of the Bloomberg School. "But now … we're finally seeing the beneficial results of these combined interventions.”

Barbara Benham, The Hub (JHU)

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