Research Needed in Several Areas to Effectively Broaden Antiretroviral Treatment Programs in Developing Nations
Many efforts are underway to expand access to antiretroviral treatment in developing nations, and these efforts should be guided by a framework of priorities for providing such treatment, according to a viewpoint piece published in the Nov. 9 issue of the Lancet. In the article, a working group of researchers convened by the Rockefeller Foundation outlines an "urgent research agenda" that prioritizes issues affecting access to treatment for people living with HIV/AIDS in developing nations. According to the panel, the topics that need additional study include:
- when to begin antiretroviral treatment;
- monitoring antiretroviral treatment;
- how to select antiretroviral drugs for administration; and
- maintaining adherence to treatment.
Even in developed nations, many questions remain regarding antiretroviral treatment, and answers to these questions are "desperately needed" in developing countries in order to establish effective treatment programs in these areas. "The need to answer these questions should not delay provision of HIV care to those who urgently need it. Instead, research can and should be built on to treatment programs to facilitate wider use of these life-saving drugs," the authors conclude (Rabkin et al., Lancet, 11/9). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.