Audet, C.M., Blevins, M., Chire, Y.M., et al. AIDS and Behavior (February 2016), e-publication ahead of print.
This study, implemented from June 2012 through March 2015, investigated the impact of a community-based intervention on male engagement in antenatal care (ANC) services; and the impact of male partner engagement on uptake of ANC services, including antiretroviral therapy (ART) and health center delivery in four rural communities in Mozambique. The authors partnered with the traditional birth attendants (TBAs) and trained a new type of male-to-male community health agent, "male champions" (MCs), who focused on counseling male partners to create male-friendly community norms around engagement in spousal/partner pregnancies. Male engagement was defined as accompanying a partner to ANC services at least once during the pregnancy. During the intervention period, MCs reached 2,928 male partners and TBAs reached 4,024 pregnant women. Compared to baseline, the intervention period was associated with increased male engagement at first ANC (5% versus 34%) or any ANC appointment (10% versus 37%); male partner testing during ANC (9% versus 34%); women testing for HIV during ANC (81% versus 92%); and attendance at three ANC appointments (33% versus 40%) during the pregnancy. The authors concluded that given the increased acceptability of the intervention and reports from MCs and TBAs, it is likely that male engagement in ANC will become a social norm in this community.