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Mzantsi Wakho

The missing link in HIV prevention: How can ‘cash plus care’ reduce HIV transmission among adolescents in Southern Africa?

This study is nested within the larger Mzantsi Wakho project on adolescent health in the Amathole district of the Eastern Cape, South Africa.

The broader study seeks to answer several research questions about youth health, with a focus on medicines-taking and sexual and reproductive health. It uses multiple methods and data sources to identify and investigate risk and resilience-promotingfactors, through linked qualitative and quantitative studies.

The team has interviewed 1,060 HIV-positive adolescents receiving care in 53 public health facilities, making this the largest community-based study of HIV-positive adolescents on the continent.

Mzantsi Wakho has produced a very wide range of rich material on youth sexual and reproductive health and the structural factors that promote and prevent it. Read more on their website...

Follow the Mzantsi Wakho podcast here...

Evidence brief

The missing link in HIV prevention: How “cash plus care” can reduce HIV transmission among adolescents in Southern Africa (5pp). Read...

AIDS2018 presentations

  • Socio-economic drivers of vulnerability in HIV-positive youth in South Africa, Prof Lucie Cluver, University of Oxford, Dr Elona Toska and Lesley Gittings, AIDS and Society Research Unit, University of Cape Town. Read...
  • Socio-structural protection from internalised HIV stigma among South African adolescents living with HIV, Dr Marija Pantelic, Mzantsi Wakho. Read...

AIDS2018 posters

  • Adherence misfits: Divergent perspectives on ART-defaulting among healthcare providers and HIV-positive adolescents. Hodes et al. TUPED424. Read...
  • Tracking through Teaching: Using schools to reach the first 90 for adolescents living with HIV . Toska et al. THPEE689. Read...
  • Prevalence and cross-sectional correlates of cognitive difficulties among HIV-positive adolescents in South Africa. Natukunda et al, Mzantsi Wakho. THPEB154. Read...
  • 90-90-48: Reality of viral supression among ART-initiated adolescents in South Africa. Haghighat et al.THPD0105. Read...

AIDS Impact

Their most recent findings were presented at AIDS Impact 2017:

  • Vectors or victims? Risk factors for high HIV transmission risk among HIV-positive adolescents: quantitative analysis from a community-traced sample in South Africa. Abstract. Read…
  • They may be the same age group, but merging them will result in poor programming: a comparison of HIV-positive adolescents infected from birth or during adolescence – and analysis for the Mzantsi Wakho cohort in South Africa. Abstract. Read…
  • Healthcare that protects against stigma: a cross-sectional survey using total population sampling of adolescent ART patients from 53 health facilities in South Africa. Abstract. Read…
  • Engaging with adolescent advisory groups in HIV/AIDS surveys and RCTs: are marshmallows essential? Read…
  • Mental health among South African adolescents living with HIV: risk and protective factors associated with internalising and externalising factors. Abstract. Read…
  • Becoming men: HIV-positive adolescent boys’ adherence to ART during initiation/circumcision in the Eastern Cape province of South Africa. Oral poster presentation. Read…

Read the EHPSA blog about Mzantsi Wakho at AIDS Impact. Here…

Recent Publications

  • Toska, E., Cluver, L.D., Boyes, M.E. et al. ‘School, Supervision and Adolescent-Sensitive Clinic Care: Combination Social Protection and Reduced Unprotected Sex Among HIV-Positive Adolescents in South Africa’. AIDS Behav (2017) 21: 2746. Read…
  • Toska, E., Gittings, L., Hodes, R. et al. (2016) ‘Resourcing resilience: social protection for HIV prevention amongst children and adolescents in Eastern and Southern Africa’, African Journal of AIDS Research, 15:2, 123-140. Read…
  • Pantelic, M., Boyes, M., Cluver, L. and Meinck, F. (2017). ‘HIV, violence, blame and shame: pathways of risk to internalized HIV stigma among South African adolescents living with HIV’. Journal of the International AIDS Society, 20: n/a, 21771. Read…
  • Natukunda, H.P.M et al.(2017) Beyond clinical trials: Cross-sectional associations of combination antiretroviral therapy with reports of multiple symptoms and non-adherence among adolescents in South Africa. South African Medical Journal. Read…
  • Hodes, R, Price, I, Toska, E et al., (2017). How frontline healthcare workers respond to stock-outs of essential medicines in the Eastern Cape. South African Medical Journal, 107 (9), 738-740. Read…
  • Gittings, L. (2017). "“He Can’t Say a Man’s Stuff to a Woman…”: Perspectives on the Preferences of Men Living with HIV for Gender-Concordant Care Workers in Cape Town, South Africa. Men and Masculinities. Read…
  • Hodes,R. (2017) 'Popular perspectives on teenage pregnancy in South Africa', in N. Mkhwanazi and D. Bhana, Young Families: Gender, Sexuality and Care (HSRC Press, 2017). Read…

AIDS Impact: Mzantsi Wakho presents


Elona Tosca on high transmission risk among positive adolescents
Lorraine Sherr on different experiences of vertically and horizontally affected adolescent
Talking about adolescent advisory groups - Noxolo Myeketsi with Lucie Cluver
Marija Pantelic on healthcare and stigma for positive adolescents
Lesley Gittings on positive youths’ experience of initiation
Mark Boys on mental health of positive adolescents
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