News from Forum members

1st November 2006

Research Update

New research studies

 Cheryl Tawana, a research nurse with the Greenway Centre (Newham Community Health Care NHS Trust ) is working with the partners of pregnant women to look at ways of improving take-up of HIV testing among African men. She would like to hear from people working with this group who might be able help her identify people eligible to take part in this research. Email Cheryl.Tawana@newhamhealth.nhs.uk if you can help.

  • The UK stage of the first cross-national study of children caring for parents and relatives with HIV in Tanzania and the UK is underway. Ruth Evans from Birmingham University is conducting fieldwork among children and young adults (age under 18 years) now, so please get in touch with Ruth if you are working with young carers (email: R.M.Evans@bham.ac.uk). Previous work has been published by Ruth on this topic: Social networks, migration, and care in Tanzania: caregivers’ and children’s resilience to coping with HIV/AIDS’, Journal of Children and Poverty, Vol.11 (2) pages 11-129, 2005.
  • Jonathan Elford’s team at City University had recently received funding for a 2 ½ year national study looking at the use of health services among black and minority ethnic men who have sex with men, including black Africans. The team will be seeking help from AHRF members in recruitment of individuals to take part in this study. Email j.elford@city.ac.uk for more details.
  • Researchers at the UCL Centre for Sexual Health and HIV Research are exploring the acceptability and feasibility of offering HIV voluntary counselling and testing in London GP clinics, including whether this would increase the uptake of testing among groups disproportionately affected by HIV in the UK, such as migrants of African origin. Recent work includes learning from the Liverpool VCT initiative in Kenya. Contact Winnie Ssanyu-Sseruma (wssseruma@gum.ucl.ac.uk) or Audrey Prost ( aprost@gum.ucl.ac.uk) at the Centre for further more information.
  • A qualitative study of the lives of black African men who have sex with men, including those living with HIV, is being conducted by Sara Paparini. She is currently recruiting HIV positive MSM in collaboration with hospitals and community organisations and would like to hear from you if you can assist in finding HIV positive MSM or bisexual men. Please contact Sarah at sara.paparini@gmail.com if you can help.

Emerging research findings

  • The new HIV module of the DIPEx website will be launched mid-November. The DIPEx HIV website, developed by Professor Jonathan Elford and Dr Damien Ridge at The City University, London, allows people to watch video clips online and listen to real patients as they explain how they cope with HIV in their every day lives and includes accounts from 24 black African men and women who were interviewed for the project. On the website, people with HIV talk about making decisions about treatments, deciding who to tell about their diagnosis, as well as how they learned to overcome isolation, discrimination and stigma. This will be a useful result for PLWHA seeking information on all aspects of living with HIV. See the DIPEx website for further details – http://www.dipex.org/hiv

Prevention and awareness raising

  • The latest work form the African HIV Policy Networks’ Changing Perspectives campaign has included a series of seminars with Christian, muslin and inter-faith communities. The results from the seminars will be used to develop a toolkit to support faith communities in tackling stigma and discrimination. Contact Georgina at AHPN for more details: georgina.caswell@ahpn.org
  • Winnie Ssanyu-Sseruma’s work with Christina Aid as an HIV Mainstreaming Coordinator has more recently included developing training and pamphlets on HIV issues to use with congregations. In addition, w orship resources for World AIDS Day are available from Christian Aid – www.christian-aid.org.uk
  • A leaflet for clinicians on the rights on dispersal of asylum seekers living with HIV is being published by the National AIDS Trust, building on work carried out last year with NASS on raising awareness of issues for asylum seekers living with HIV (see the NAT website for the report: http://www.nat.org.uk/document/113). NAT are continuing to monitor the new NASS guidelines on dispersal of asylum seekers living with HIV, so please contact NAT if you come across cases of PLWHA being dispersed without notice or without access to continuing care. Contact Sheonaidh Cumming at NAT or email info@nat.org.uk
  • Toju Cline-Cole reported that NAHIP partners, the Crescent Support Group, in St Albans have been running outreach programmes as part of the Beyond Condoms campaign. They are now extending their work to young people and faith communities. Find out more about the Beyond Condoms campaign from http://www.nahip.org.uk/ or contact Toju: toju@thecrescent.org.uk
  • Ike Anya from Bristol raised the question of resources fro HIV prevention and whether these matched changes in the epidemiology of HIV infection outside London. Areas such as Bristol have seen changes in the numbers of diagnoses, but service level agreements remain unchanged. The NAT have recently completed a survey of commissioners that may shed some light on this issue once findings become available.

Conferences

  • The next CHAPS conference will be held in London on 6 & 7th March 2007. This is an opportunity to hear latest developments and share ideas about health promotion for gay and bisexual men, and this year the organisers are planning to highlight health promotion issues relevant to African MSM and a re ken to hear from people working in this area. For registration details and information on submitting an abstract, visit the website www.chapsonline.org.uk/c10
  • In Bristol, THT are collaborating with the Bristol network of people working in HIV treatment and prevention among black Africans and Caribbeans. They are planning a conference on 4 th December to launch this multi-disciplinary network, the first of its kind in Bristol. Contact Faustina at Bristol THT for more details: faustina.montsho@tht.org.uk

Training

  • As part of the African PEP campaign, THT aim to run a number of basic PEP awareness training courses targeting health promoters working with African communities. Contact Elias Phiri at THT for more details – elias.phiri@tht.org.uk

Consultations

  • BHIVA are seeking feedback on the BHIVA guidelines for ‘The management of sexual and reproductive health (SRH) of people living with HIV infection’. Please visit the BHIVA website (http://www.bhiva.org/) to download the guidelines and forward your views t the secretariat at bhiva@bhiva.org by the deadline on 6 th December 2006
Last Updated November 20, 2006