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News Outlets Continue To Report On Health Affairs Study Showing U.S. Funding For Abstinence Programs Not Associated With HIV Risk Reduction In Africa

Newsweek: Unsurprisingly, Study Shows Promoting Abstinence Doesn’t Prevent HIV Transmission
“…A study published May 2 in Health Affairs provides ample evidence that [abstinence promotion] programs are not effective for changing sexual behavior or reducing rates of HIV transmission and unwanted pregnancies. This study is based on data for 500,000 people in 22 different countries, some with PEPFAR abstinence programs in place between 1998 and 2013, and others without. All of the study participants were younger than age 30…” (Firger, 5/3).

NPR: U.S. Spent $1.4 Billion To Stop HIV By Promoting Abstinence. Did It Work?
“…Many health officials consider PEPFAR a succes. It is credited with giving lifesaving HIV drugs to more than five million people and preventing nearly one million babies from getting HIV from their mothers. But a study, published Monday in Health Affairs, finds the abstinence programs have been a failure…” (Doucleff, 5/3).

Reuters Health: U.S.-funded abstinence programs not working in Africa
“…In a statement emailed to Reuters Health, a PEPFAR spokesperson said the initiative’s approach and investments have continuously evolved based on scientific evidence. ‘Current prevention science demonstrates that a combination package of evidence-based behavioral, biomedical, and structural prevention interventions, tailored to the populations and geographic areas with the greatest burden, is most effective in addressing the epidemic,’ said the spokesperson…” (Seaman, 5/3).

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