HIV treatment knowledge in the context of “Treatment as Prevention” (TasP)

According to 2012 universal ART guidelines, as part of “treatment as prevention” (TasP), all people living with HIV (PLWH) should immediately initiate antiretroviral therapy post-diagnosis to facilitate viral suppression. PLWH who are virally suppressed have no risk of sexually transmitting HIV. This study used descriptive analysis of quantitative data (N = 99) and thematic analysis of qualitative interviews (n = 36) to compare participants recruited from a hospital-based detoxification (detox) unit, largely diagnosed with HIV pre-2012 (n = 63) vs. those recruited from public, urban sexual health clinics (SHCs), mainly diagnosed in 2012 or later (n = 36). Detox participants were significantly more knowledgeable than SHC participants about HIV treatment, except regarding TasP. SHC participants’ desire for rapid linkage to care and ART initiation was in line with 2012 universal ART guidelines and TasP messaging regarding viral suppression. More targeted messaging to PLWH pre-2012 could ensure that all PLWH benefit from scientific advances in HIV treatment.

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Full citation:
Paschen-Wolff MM, Campbell ANC, Tross S, Castro M, Berg H, Braunstein S, Borges C, Des Jarlais D (2020).
HIV treatment knowledge in the context of “Treatment as Prevention” (TasP)
AIDS and Behavior, 24 (10), 2984-2994. doi: 10.1007/s10461-020-02849-7. PMCID: PMC7483279.