HIV treatment as prevention: optimising the impact of expanded HIV treatment programmes

Wim Delva, Jeffrey W Eaton, Fei Meng, Christophe Fraser, Richard G White, Peter Vickerman, Marie-Claude Boily, Timothy B Hallett

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

47 Citations (Scopus)


Until now, decisions about how to allocate ART have largely been based on maximising the therapeutic benefit of ART for patients. Since the results of the HPTN 052 study showed efficacy of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in preventing HIV transmission, there has been increased interest in the benefits of ART not only as treatment, but also in prevention. Resources for expanding ART in the short term may be limited, so the question is how to generate the most prevention benefit from realistic potential increases in the availability of ART. Although not a formal systematic review, here we review different ways in which access to ART could be expanded by prioritising access to particular groups based on clinical or behavioural factors. For each group we consider (i) the clinical and epidemiological benefits, (ii) the potential feasibility, acceptability, and equity, and (iii) the affordability and cost-effectiveness of prioritising ART access for that group. In re-evaluating the allocation of ART in light of the new data about ART preventing transmission, the goal should be to create policies that maximise epidemiological and clinical benefit while still being feasible, affordable, acceptable, and equitable.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e1001258
JournalPLoS Medicine
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2012


  • Anti-HIV Agents
  • Antiretroviral Therapy, Highly Active
  • CD4 Lymphocyte Count
  • HIV Infections
  • Health Planning
  • Humans


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