Female sex workers (FSWs) carry a disproportionate burden of the HIV epidemic globally. Discrimination and stigma, both internal and external, often prevent the women from going to a clinic or connecting with a healthcare provider to be tested for HIV.
In order to evaluate innovative solutions to this problem, JSI and Harvard University’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health began a research initiative in Zambia on HIV self-testing (HIVST) as an alternative method of initiating HIV testing for FSWs.
The research, recently published by BMJ Open, titled Zambian Peer Educators for HIV Self-Testing (ZEST) study rationale and design of a cluster randomised trial of HIV self-testing among female sex workers in Zambia, is one of the first peer-reviewed publications to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of HIVST among FSWs.
Read more about the research on JSI's page.