No More Invisibility of Women in HIV Policy in the UK
There are 31,600 women living with HIV in the UK, 31% of the total. 1226 women were diagnosed with HIV in 2016, 24% of all diagnoses. 47% of women were diagnosed late, which means greater risks to their health.
"Yet there is little focus on HIV prevention for women, and few services or sources of support for women living with HIV." - notes Jacqui Stevenson, researcher and advocate for human rights.
"Women's experiences, priorities, and needs around HIV prevention, care or support may be very different to those of men, but there is little research to tell us about this. In my PhD research, looking at women's experiences of ageing with HIV, I have heard many women describe feeling invisible, as there is so little focus on women in HIV policy and programmes." - she said.
Now two surveys are launched, which will be critical in giving greater insight into women's priorities, experiences and preferences around HIV, and help to inform an advocacy and policy agenda to make positive change.
"Making women visible is vital to reducing HIV transmission, and to upholding the rights of women regardless of their HIV status." - resumed Stevenson.