Social Science Programme / Structural Drivers of the HIV epidemic

Lead Research Organisation: MRC/UVRI Uganda Research Unit on AIDS

Abstract

Recent evidence suggests increasing rates of HIV infection in fishing populations in Africa, including Uganda and Malawi. Robust data on prevalence and risk factors for HIV and other STIs including behavioural characterisitics are needed for designing biomedical and behavioural interventions. Such data are also required to establish the suitability of fishing communities for future HIV prevention trials.||There is currently one project under this theme conducted at the MRC/UVRI Uganda Unit with the objective to determine and understand the social and behavioural context of people living in selected fishing communities on the shores of Lake Victoria, Uganda and Lake Malawi in Malawi. The project also aims to build social science capacity within Uganda Virus Research Institute. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are used documenting the characteristics of the fishing communities, leadership in the community, the ways in which social norms and behaviours can affect vulnerability/resilience to HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, levels of mobility amongst different groups, health seeking behaviour and the level of utilisation of health services in general and HIV and AIDS services in particular by people residing in the fishing village/landing site.

Technical Summary

Recent evidence suggests increasing rates of HIV infection in fishing populations. Prevalence of HIV among lakeshore communities is significantly higher than that found in other populations in Uganda, raising concerns both for the health and wellbeing of those involved in fisheries and for the sustenance of fisheries as a viable economic activity, as experienced fishers have succumbed to infection. Robust data on prevalence and risk factors for HIV and other STIs including behavioural characterisitics are needed for designing biomedical and behavioural interventions. Such data are also required to establish the suitability of fishing communities for future HIV prevention trials.||There is currently one project under this theme with the objective to determine and understand the social and behavioural context of people living in selected fishing communities on the shores of Lake Victoria, Uganda and Lake Malawi in Malawi. The project also aims to build social science capacity within the Uganda Virus Research Institute. Both qualitative and quantitative methods are used documenting the characteristics of the fishing communities, leadership in the community, the ways in which social norms and behaviours can affect vulnerability/resilience to HIV and other sexually transmitted infections, levels of mobility amongst different groups, health seeking behaviour and the level of utilisation of health services in general and HIV and AIDS services in particular by people residing in the fishing village/landing site. In association with on-going virological studies in the same communities we are relating detailed life-histories of people living with HIV to data on circulating viruses in these communities characterized by two HIV-1 genes (gag and pol). ||This work is co-funded by resources from the EDCTP and from the MRC/UVRI Uganda Research Unit on AIDS.

Publications

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Mbonye M (2014) Alcohol consumption and high risk sexual behaviour among female sex workers in Uganda. in African journal of AIDS research : AJAR

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Negin J (2016) Sexual Behavior of Older Adults Living with HIV in Uganda. in Archives of sexual behavior

 
Description IAVI 
Organisation International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI)
Country Global 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution Research team for design, data collection, analysis and writing.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborative research
Impact multi-disciplinary
Start Year 2007
 
Description Liverpool 
Organisation Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Research Collaboration
Collaborator Contribution Research collaboration
Impact Training and experience sharing
Start Year 2008