Impact of COVID-19 on Adolescent HIV Prevention and Treatment Research in the AHISA Network.
Year of Publication
Members of the Adolescent HIV Prevention and Treatment Implementation Science Alliance (AHISA) network conduct research aiming to close gaps between what is known to be impactful across the HIV prevention and treatment cascade, and services delivered to optimize outcomes for adolescents/young adults (AYA) in high HIV-prevalence settings. The COVID-19 pandemic introduced new challenges which threaten to exacerbate care and access disparities. We report results of a survey among AHISA teams with active AYA HIV research programs in African countries to determine how the pandemic has impacted their efforts. Results highlighted the detrimental impact of the pandemic on research efforts and the expanded need for implementation research to help provide evidence-based, context-specific pandemic recovery support. Key lessons learned included the viability of remote service delivery strategies and other innovations, the need for adaptive systems that respond to evolving contextual needs, and the need for organized documentation plans, within empathic and flexible environments.