Mapping Pathways is a multi-national project to develop and nurture a research-driven, community-led global understanding of the emerging evidence base around the adoption of antiretroviral-based prevention strategies to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic. The evidence base is more than results from clinical trials - it must include stakeholder and community perspectives as well.

28 June 2012

Reasons to Use Biomedical Prevention to Fight HIV/AIDS


In France, the controversy between HIV organizations about PrEP appear in the media and social networks, from moral considerations disguised in ethical objections to classic behavioral speculations (as there was on the TasP or PEP) [4].

So, to clarify and defuse the situation, it should be noted some points :

The biomedical prevention is a revolution in terms of sexual and mental health for serodifferent couples (especially those who want to have children) and poz sex workers (under pressure from their customers to have condomless sex), removing the risk and visceral fear of contamination. It is essential for fighting the demonization of people living with HIV/Aids (PLWHA) in our poz-phobic society : they are no longer considered as « viral bombs ».

- The biomedical prevention is a need expressed by all PLWHAs and peoples concerned by HIV [5].

- The biomedical prevention is an additional argument for the battle for universal access to treatment in poor countries and in prisons.

- The biomedical prevention is an important argument against the criminalization of HIV transmission, which beyond our respective countries, is increasing in Africa (since women are the first victims).

- The biomedical prevention must be done within the strict framework of informed consent and needs (therapeutic, psychological, sexual and social) of the concerned person(s). In no circumstances it may force the initiation of treatment to anyone, even if early treatment appears to have benefits, and although some mathematical models abound for the establishment of a general strategy of Test&Treat. Warning has long been positioned on the subject [6].

These reasons alone are sufficient to promote biomedical prevention [7] in a responsible manner and combined [8] to other tools in the fight against AIDS : condoms, HIV testing [9], Counseling, and struggles against serophobia and criminalization of sexual transmission of HIV.

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