Day 3

Day Three:
Int. Workshop on HIV & Adolescence 2019

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Mental Health and Psychosocial Support
Dr Sarah Berneys opened with the keynote presentation Beyond cells and pills: seeing all that matters. The key message focused on the importance of psychosocial support and called for this to be the 4th 90 in the HIV cascade. Dr Berney’s discussed the important relationship between ART adherence and psychosocial challenges. She highlighted how mental health challenges lead to negative physical health outcomes. And for ALHIV who have been seen to have a higher prevalence of mental health disorders, that poor adherence is often a symptom of psychosocial challenges they are facing. She also provided examples of interventions of psychosocial support that has led to better mental health outcomes.

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Oral Abstracts
We heard four oral abstracts with the following key messages:

 View all the abstracts online

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Sponsored Symposium
Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation: Does it take a village to support treatment-experienced adolescents living with HIV?
The symposium opened with keynote presentations by Natella Rakhmanina, on Switching ART Regimen: Why, When, and How?; and Disclosing HIV status: Mission Possible by Judith Kose. The presentations introduced two important programme tools developed by the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation – 1) New Horizons Advancing Pediatric HIV Care Collaborative Management of Treatment Failure for Pediatric and Adolescent Patients Resource Package and 2) Disclosure of HIV Status Toolkit for Pediatric and Adolescent Populations. Dr Rakmanina’s presentation focused on the need for switching to be patient-centred and the need to change the language around ‘failing’ ART. Dr Kose focused on the steps needed in the disclosure process as not a one-time event and that it needs to be planned with the caregiver, the health worker, and the adolescent.

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Scaling up interventions: improving the quality and sustainability of programs
The last session of the day focused on Scaling Up Services to ensure no adolescent is left behind. A panel discussion with Government representatives, focusing on the key role that both Government and partners play in scaling up services. Dr Alice Ketchaji from Cameroon mentioned the importance of disaggregated data to appropriately target services. The requirement for cost effective interventions was highlighted D. Laura Oyiengo from Kenya. From Namibia Dr Sylvia Ashikoto discussed efforts to provide a targeted package of care for ALHIV through Teen Clubs and have national guidance to support scale-up. Overall there was a call for partners and researchers to consider key aspects of scale when designing interventions.

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Oral Abstracts
We heard three oral abstracts with the following key messages:

 View all the abstracts online

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Closing Remarks
The close of the 2019 Int. Workshop on HIV & Adolescence was marked with recommendations from the Youth Reference Group, final comments from Workshop Co-Chairs and a video of highlights.

This workshop was seen to be unique in the way that is brought together key stakeholders and generations on issues across the whole adolescent HIV prevention, treatment and care cascade. It placed adolescents and young people front and centre, driving and participating in all sessions. This years’ aim to have research-driven approach was a success with high numbers of quality abstracts, posters and oral presentations. Hearing real-life stories of adolescents, as well as the latest evidence, created an important dynamic. For next year the Youth Reference Group recommended that all presentations aim to reach a diverse audience, with easier to understand, youth appropriate language. They highlighted the need for more youth researchers to be given opportunity, additional time for dedicated skills building and the importance of including young key populations.

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The keynote speakers and oral abstract PowerPoint presentations will be available on infectiousdiseasesonline.com very soon!

Special thanks to the oral and poster presenters, the volunteers from Maisha Youth, the Youth Reference Group, the Organising Committee, the Scientific Committee, our endorsers and sponsors.

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