Hiding in Plain Sight: The Role of Contraception in Preventing HIV

Source: Guttmacher Policy Review

Integrating the provision of voluntary contraceptive services into programs where HIV-positive women are going for HIV-related treatment is essential to make U.S. efforts to combat the AIDS epidemic more effective, according to a new Guttmacher Institute policy analysis. Unintended pregnancy prevention is a critical, but largely overlooked, component of any prevention strategy since so many HIV-positive women wish to delay or prevent pregnancy, the analysis finds.

Women of reproductive age comprise more than half of the 33 million people living with HIV around the world. But currently, programs designed to help prevent the transmission of HIV from mother to child only reach about one in 10 eligible women in poor countries. Meanwhile, a large number of women in these programs say that their pregnancies were unintended.

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