Publication Type: Journal article
Year: 2023
Author(s): Bergh, K., Toska, E., Duby, Z., Govindasamy, D., Mathews, C., Reddy, T., Jonas, K.
Unit: AARHub
Journal: AIDS and Behaviour

Abstract: "Adolescent girls and young women (AGYW) in South Africa are at a three times higher risk of acquiring HIV than their male counterparts. The HIV prevention cascade is a tool which can be used to measure coverage of HIV prevention services, although there is limited empirical evidence to demonstrate its application in low-resourced settings. The unifying framework is a conceptualisation of the HIV prevention cascade which theorises that both motivation and access are required for an individual to effectively use an HIV prevention method. We applied this framework to data from a random sample of 127,951 beneficiaries of a combination HIV prevention programme for AGYW aged 15–24 in South Africa to measure the steps to, and identify key barriers to, effective use of male condoms and oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) among this vulnerable population. Barriers to each step were analysed using univariate and multivariable logistic regression. Among self-reported HIV-negative AGYW who had sex in the past 6 months, effective use of condoms (15.2%), access to PrEP (39.1%) and use of PrEP (3.8%) were low. AGYW were: less likely to be motivated to use condoms if they believed that they had a faithful partner (aOR 0.44, 95% CI 0.22–0.90) or disliked condoms (aOR 0.26, 95% CI 0.11–0.57), less likely to access condoms if the place where AGYW accessed them was far away (aOR 0.25, 95% CI 0.10–0.64), more likely to effectively use condoms if they received counselling on how to use them (aOR 2.24, 95% CI 1.05–4.76), less likely to be motivated to use PrEP if they did not believe PrEP was efficacious (aOR 0.35, 95% CI 0.17–0.72), more likely to be motivated if they felt confident that they could use PrEP, and more likely to have access to PrEP if they had ever been offered PrEP (aOR 2.94, 95% CI 1.19–7.22). This combination HIV prevention programme and similar programmes should focus on risk-reduction counselling interventions for AGYW and their male partners to improve effective use of condoms and ensure easy access to condoms and PrEP by making them available in youth-friendly spaces. Our findings demonstrate that the application of HIV prevention cascades can inform AGYW HIV prevention programming in low-resourced settings."


Citation: Bergh, K., Toska, E., Duby, Z., Govindasamy, D., Mathews, C., Reddy, T., Jonas, K. (2023). Applying the HIV Prevention Cascade to an Evaluation of a Large-Scale Combination HIV Prevention Programme for Adolescent Girls and Young Women in South Africa. AIDS and Behaviour. DOI: 10.1007/s10461-023-04130-z