Developing a National HIV Prevention Policy for a Mature Epidemic – University of Copenhagen

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Developing a National HIV Prevention Policy for a Mature Epidemic

Professor Edward K. Kirumira, Deputy Principal
College of Humanities & Social Sciences, Makerere University

Professor Susan Reynolds Whyte
Dept of Anthropology, University of Copenhagen

Several sub‐Saharan African countries are experiencing a mature, generalized and heterogeneous HIV&AIDS epidemic. It is acknowledged that the rate at which people are getting infected with HIV is faster than those eligible are being enrolled on ARVs and mortality rate due to HIV&AIDS related sicknesses is still high. The dynamics of the HIV epidemic for instance in Uganda signal an urgent need for intensified and sustained prevention efforts to drastically reduce on the increasing numbers of those getting infected. Maintaining appropriate investment in life‐long treatment and impact mitigation might not be feasible considering current challenges in resource predictability and sustainability. Recent analyses of the drivers of the epidemic have also revealed a host of social, cultural and structural drivers of the epidemic that might not be addressed from the point of view of HIV/AIDS treatment programming alone.

There are also fears that the promise of ART could have inadvertently led to the observed growing trend of normalization of the epidemic that greatly impacts on HIV risk perception and internalization at individual level. We need therefore to re‐focus and re‐package prevention interventions taking into account of course advances in HIV treatment and care.

Edward K. Kirumira, PhD, is Deputy Principal at the College of Humanities & Social Sciences, Makerere University, Uganda. Having been trained at Makerere University, Exeter University in the UK, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine in the UK, University of Copenhagen in Denmark and Harvard University in the USA, he is specialized in Population and Reproductive Health with extensive research work in HIV/AIDS, emergent diseases and international health issues.

The seminar is hosted by Centre of African Studies and Department of Anthropology at University of Copenhagen in cooperation.