Why HIV prevention programmes fail
Catherine Campbell explains the reasons behind this, which may also apply to other programmes
Why do many well intentioned HIV prevention programmes have disappointing results? How do the beliefs and practices of medical doctors and researchers contribute to the success or failure of prevention efforts? In seeking to explain the obstacles to effective management of HIV and AIDS, attention is usually given to factors internal to affected communities (such as exotic aspects of local cultures; or individuals' health, attitudes, or behaviours). The spotlight also often falls on technical aspects of control regimens for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) or the content of health educational messages. Less attention has been given to the way in which prevention efforts are conceptualised and managed, and to the challenges that face those trying to build partnerships between medical doctors and researchers and the non-traditional partners they need to work with if the epidemic is to be effectively managed in the marginalised communities in which it often flourishes.