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Preferences for Long-Acting PrEP Products Among Women and Girls: A Quantitative Survey and Discrete Choice Experiment in Eswatini, Kenya, and South Africa

While oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) can substantially reduce HIV risk, there are important barriers to uptake and adherence. We explored preferences for long-acting injectable and implantable PrEP among women and girls in Eswatini, Kenya, and South Africa. We conducted an online quantitative survey and discrete choice experiment (DCE) among adolescent girls (15–17), young women (18–29), and adult women (30–49). Participants completed a survey about their demographics and behavior and a DCE with 5 attributes (format, insertion location, number of insertions, dual-protection, and palpability). We recruited 1236 respondents (Eswatini = 420; Kenya = 350; South Africa = 493) in May 2022. Most participants were sexually active (72%), nearly 29% of whom reported recently engaging in transactional sex. 46% had heard of oral PrEP, but of those, only 16% reported having ever used it. Product format and dual-protection were significant predictors of product choice. Relative to a 2-month injection, participants had 1.76 times the odds (95% CI 1.08–2.04) of choosing a 6-month injectable, and 1.70 the odds (95% CI 1.06–1.92) of choosing a 12-month removable implant. Compared to a single-indication product, respondents had 2.46 times the odds (95% CI 1.04–2.68) of preferring a product also protecting against pregnancy, and 2.81 the odds (95% CI 1.04–3.05) of choosing a product that also protected against STIs. Adolescent girls and women in these countries showed strong preferences for longer-acting PrEP product formats, as well as those offering dual-protection. Introduction of long-acting options could improve PrEP uptake and reduce HIV burdens in east and southern African settings.

November 2023

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Journal Article
Journal Article
MPT Articles
MPT Article
Resource

Citation:

While oral pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) can substantially reduce HIV risk, there are important barriers to uptake and adherence. We explored preferences for long-acting injectable and implantable PrEP among women and girls in Eswatini, Kenya, and South Africa. We conducted an online quantitative survey and discrete choice experiment (DCE) among adolescent girls (15–17), young women (18–29), and adult women (30–49). Participants completed a survey about their demographics and behavior and a DCE with 5 attributes (format, insertion location, number of insertions, dual-protection, and palpability). We recruited 1236 respondents (Eswatini = 420; Kenya = 350; South Africa = 493) in May 2022. Most participants were sexually active (72%), nearly 29% of whom reported recently engaging in transactional sex. 46% had heard of oral PrEP, but of those, only 16% reported having ever used it. Product format and dual-protection were significant predictors of product choice. Relative to a 2-month injection, participants had 1.76 times the odds (95% CI 1.08–2.04) of choosing a 6-month injectable, and 1.70 the odds (95% CI 1.06–1.92) of choosing a 12-month removable implant. Compared to a single-indication product, respondents had 2.46 times the odds (95% CI 1.04–2.68) of preferring a product also protecting against pregnancy, and 2.81 the odds (95% CI 1.04–3.05) of choosing a product that also protected against STIs. Adolescent girls and women in these countries showed strong preferences for longer-acting PrEP product formats, as well as those offering dual-protection. Introduction of long-acting options could improve PrEP uptake and reduce HIV burdens in east and southern African settings.

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Authors: Little, KM ; Hanif, H ; Anderson, SM ; Clark, MR ; Gustafson, K ; Doncel, GF

Health Risks(s):

  • HIV

Product type(s):

  • HIVinhibitor
  • Implants
  • Injectables
  • MPTs

Topic(s):

  • MPTs
  • Social

Region(s)

  • Africa

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