Treatment-as-Prevention: The Household Characteristics of Serodiscordant Partners in a South African Community

Alain Vandormael, University of Minnesota
Frank Tanser, Africa Centre for Health and Population Studies
Marie-Louise Newell, University of KwaZulu-Natal and African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)

I am particularly interested in the study of treatment-as-prevention (TasP) initiatives to reduce the transmission of HIV, specifically among couples where one partner is HIV-positive and the other is not (serodiscordancy). TasP is based on clinical evidence showing that antiretroviral (ARV) treatments can significantly reduce the viral load of a HIV-positive person, and therefore reduce the probability of transmission to an uninfected spouse. But little is currently known about how TasP will play out in the real world scenario of implementation. Socio-demographic work can contribute to an understanding of the household characteristics of serodiscordant relationships that are likely to influence the efficacy of TasP interventions. I use data from a population-based surveillance system designed to mirror the demographic reality of a local community that is situated at the epicenter of the South African HIV/AIDS epidemic.

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Presented in Session 174: HIV/AIDS in the Era of ART