Working to Advance Health Equity in Africa



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World AIDS Day: Getting key populations on the Fast-Track

December 1 marked World AIDS Day. A brief moment reflection our recent achievements in the fight against HIV and AIDS point to some significant victories. Globally, we have more scientific knowledge on how the virus is transmitted with prevention and treatment options being tailored to suit particular population profiles. The strategic response to the epidemic in Africa (UNAIDS Fast Track, 90-90-90 ALL –IN ) has kept pace with recent scientific discoveries. There are however challenges ahead and we cannot slow down efforts in the fights to reduce new infections. While ...>>


UN: HIV rate in young African women disturbingly high

ARV treatment on the rise, but UN urges urgent action as thousands of young women continue to be infected with HIV. The number of HIV-infected people taking anti-retroviral (ARV) medicine has doubled in just five years, the United Nations said while highlighting high infection rates among young African women. A new report released by UNAIDS, a UN programme, on Monday said thousands of young women and girls across the world are being infected with the HIV virus every week and preventing new infections is still proving difficult. The report added that while UNAIDS was on ...>>


2017 PhD Scholarships – Developing African Academics

HEARD’s Scholarship Programme aims to emphasise the mastery of quantitative and qualitative methods for understanding policy problems and for devising, evaluating and/or implementing policy solutions. The aim of providing PhD scholarships is to produce expertly qualified graduates to advise or to be part of influential policy making organisations in Africa. Under the supervision of Professor Nana Poku and with the generous support of Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency, HEARD is offering up to five PhD Research Scholarships (full time) in any of the ...>>


Frank Tanser shares results from a population-based cohort in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa on the application of geospatial analyses to reveal targets for intervention

Frank Tanser an infectious disease epidemiologist with specialist expertise in geographical information systems technology, shares results from a population-based cohort in rural KZN, on the application of geospatial analyses to reveal targets for intervention. About the speaker: Frank Tanser an infectious disease epidemiologist with specialist expertise in geographical information systems (GIS) technology.  He is Professor of Epidemiology in the College of Health Sciences at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and is an Honorary Professor of University College London ...>>


Economics, financing and HIV: Reflections from the 2016 International AIDS Economics Network Preconference

[Original post on Results for Development ] Last month’s International AIDS Economics Network (IAEN) Preconference in Durban (July 15-16, 2016) demonstrated the strong political will to prioritize financing and harness economics to sustain the global HIV response and end AIDS. What a long way we have come since we first met in Durban 16 years ago. With high-level participation by ministers of health from Lesotho, Namibia, Botswana, Uganda, and Zimbabwe, along with the heads of UNAIDS and PEPFAR and experts from the CDC and the World Bank, this gathering demonstrated ...>>


HEARD Disability Research named in UNICEF’s Best Research for 2016

A pilot study conducted by HEARD researchers on the hidden cost of disability in South Africa has been named in UNICEF’S Best Research report for 2016. UNICEF, or the United Nations Children’s Emergency Fund is a United Nations programme which provides humanitarian assistance and development to mothers and children in the developing world. HEARD in partnership with the South African Department of Social Development, the National Development Agency, the UN Partnership to Promote the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) and the South African Social Security Agency ...>>


AIDS2016: African Journal of AIDS Research Special Issue Launch

A special edition of the African Journal of AIDS Research was successfully launched at the 21st International AIDS Conference by HEARD and Sida. The issue, ‘Fast tracking HIV prevention: scientific advances and implementation challenges’, includes  contributions by specialists on how the HIV  prevention response in the East and Southern African region should be shaped going forward and translates recent development in the HIV/AIDS arena into guiding action that will advance prevention in the new development framework. The special issue is available freely ...>>


Sexual & reproductive health & rights – our approach

In the era of Sustainable Development Goals, the importance of linking sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) with HIV is rightly recognised. In Africa, most HIV infections are sexually transmitted or are associated with pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding; moreover, sexual and reproductive ill-health and HIV also share root causes, including poverty, gender inequality, and social marginalisation of vulnerable groups. Success in reversing these trends will require a far stronger focus in national level research on underlying drivers of discrimination, be ...>>


Why do HIV prevention programmes fail to reach at risk men?

The case of voluntary male medical circumcision roll out in South Africa A promising HIV prevention strategy aimed specifically at young men is voluntary medical male circumcision (VMMC), as men who have been medically circumcised are 60% less likely to contract HIV through male to female vaginal sex. The World Health Organization and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS have recommended that 80% of men, aged 15 to 49 years old undergo circumcision by the end of 2016. Should these targets be met, the VMMC intervention should avert more than 1 million new HIV ...>>


HEARD hosts high level discussion on ‘The future of AIDS financing in Africa.’

HEARD recently hosted a unique meeting of African ministers of Health at the Ditchley Foundation, Oxford, in the UK. Also in attendance were selected Directors of National AIDS Commissions, UNAIDS officials, the World Bank, United Nations Development Programme, Swedish International Development Cooperation and other concerned organisations to consider the future of AIDS financing.  The meeting was organised by Professor Nana K. Poku, Health Economics Research Chair at the UKZN. The discussions turned on the call by UNAIDS for greatly increased funding in order to meet ...>>