• Towards More Accurate HIV Testing in Sub-Saharan Africa: a Multi-Site Evaluation of HIV RDTs and Risk Factors For False Positives

      Kosack, CS; Page, AL; Beelaert, G; Benson, T; Savane, A; Ng'ang'a, A; Andre, B; Zahinda, JP; Shanks, L; Fransen, K (International AIDS Society, 2017-03-22)
      Although individual HIV rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) show good performance in evaluations conducted by WHO, reports from several African countries highlight potentially significant performance issues. Despite widespread use of RDTs for HIV diagnosis in resource-constrained settings, there has been no systematic, head-to-head evaluation of their accuracy with specimens from diverse settings across sub-Saharan Africa. We conducted a standardized, centralized evaluation of eight HIV RDTs and two simple confirmatory assays at a WHO collaborating centre for evaluation of HIV diagnostics using specimens from six sites in five sub-Saharan African countries.
    • Tracing defaulters in HIV prevention of mother-to-child transmission programmes through community health workers: results from a rural setting in Zimbabwe.

      Vogt, Florian; Ferreyra, Cecilia; Bernasconi, Andrea; Ncube, Lewis; Taziwa, Fabian; Marange, Winnie; Wachi, David; Becher, Heiko (International AIDS Society, 2015-10)
      High retention in care is paramount to reduce vertical human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infections in prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programmes but remains low in many sub-Saharan African countries. We aimed to assess the effects of community health worker-based defaulter tracing (CHW-DT) on retention in care and mother-to-child HIV transmission, an innovative approach that has not been evaluated to date.
    • "We Are Part of a Family". Benefits and Limitations of Community ART Groups (CAGs) in Thyolo, Malawi: a Qualitative Study

      Pellecchia, U; Baert, S; Nundwe, S; Bwanali, A; Zamadenga, B; Metcalf, CA; Bygrave, H; Daho, S; Ohler, L; Chibwandira, B; et al. (International AIDS Society, 2017-03-28)
      In 2012 Community ART Groups (CAGs), a community-based model of antiretroviral therapy (ART) delivery were piloted in Thyolo District, Malawi as a way to overcome patient barriers to accessing treatment, and to decrease healthcare workers' workload. CAGs are self-formed groups of patients on ART taking turns to collect ART refills for all group members from the health facility. We conducted a qualitative study to assess the benefits and challenges of CAGs from patients' and healthcare workers' (HCWs) perspectives.