Trialing “Test and Treat”

Door-to-door HIV testing and on-the-spot referrals for treatment could substantially reduce new HIV infections in southern Africa, according to the largest-ever HIV prevention trial, known as PopART.

This randomized trial of the “universal test and treat” strategy involved 48,300 adults. It was based on the idea that if people living with HIV know their status and are treated, the risk of passing on the virus would be slashed. The researchers were right.

New HIV infections were 30% lower in communities offering voluntary testing. Those who tested positive were referred right away to treatment; those who tested negative were offered preventive measures.  

London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (news release)

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