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Assessing the feasibility of police initiation of HIV post-exposure prophylaxis for sexual violence survivors in Lusaka, Zambia

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Globally, more than 1 in 3 women have experienced physical or sexual violence (SV) from intimate partners or SV from non-partners... Furthermore, over 10% of all girls are estimated to have experienced a forced sexual act, with the highest rates of SV against girls found in sub-Saharan Africa... Previous research in Zambia suggests that exposure to SV is equally pervasive among adolescent girls... The risks associated with SV, especially among young women, are numerous... Building on the results of previous research in Zambia, which demonstrated that trained Victim Support Unit (VSU) police officers could effectively administer the emergency contraception pill to SV survivors, the Population Council, Zambia Police Service, and Ministry of Health aimed to assess the feasibility of having trained VSU police officers safely and effectively provide a PEP starter dose to SV survivors with immediate referral to comprehensive medical services... Service providers and policy makers in the police, medical, and social services sectors were trained on what constitutes SGBV; risks associated with SGBV; the rights of SV survivors; the Zambian government's multi-sectoral approach to managing SV cases; and specific interventions available to SV survivors, including PEP... VSU police officers and medical personnel also received additional training on how to safely and effectively initiate SV survivors on PEP at the police station with immediate referral to the nearest tertiary hospital for forensic evidence collection and comprehensive medical assessment and treatment... While 33% of eligible survivors who reported during official working hours received PEP, only 18% of those who reported on nights or weekends received PEP... No adverse events were reported as a result of trained VSU police officers providing PEP during the study period... The results from this feasibility study demonstrate that police officers can safely and effectively provide SV survivors with a 3-day starter pack of PEP and refer them to health services for follow-up.

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Police delivery of PEP (November 2012 - October 2013).
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Figure 1: Police delivery of PEP (November 2012 - October 2013).

Mentions: Approximately 50% (n = 104) of the 207 case reports were eligible to receive PEP (Figure 1). Only 25% (n = 26) of eligible survivors were initiated on PEP by the police. Notably, less than half (n = 49) of all eligible cases reported at police stations or posts during the VSU officers' official working hours. While 33% of eligible survivors who reported during official working hours received PEP, only 18% of those who reported on nights or weekends received PEP. No adverse events were reported as a result of trained VSU police officers providing PEP during the study period.


Assessing the feasibility of police initiation of HIV post-exposure prophylaxis for sexual violence survivors in Lusaka, Zambia
Police delivery of PEP (November 2012 - October 2013).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License 1 - License 2
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4496634&req=5

Figure 1: Police delivery of PEP (November 2012 - October 2013).
Mentions: Approximately 50% (n = 104) of the 207 case reports were eligible to receive PEP (Figure 1). Only 25% (n = 26) of eligible survivors were initiated on PEP by the police. Notably, less than half (n = 49) of all eligible cases reported at police stations or posts during the VSU officers' official working hours. While 33% of eligible survivors who reported during official working hours received PEP, only 18% of those who reported on nights or weekends received PEP. No adverse events were reported as a result of trained VSU police officers providing PEP during the study period.

View Article: PubMed Central - HTML

AUTOMATICALLY GENERATED EXCERPT
Please rate it.

Globally, more than 1 in 3 women have experienced physical or sexual violence (SV) from intimate partners or SV from non-partners... Furthermore, over 10% of all girls are estimated to have experienced a forced sexual act, with the highest rates of SV against girls found in sub-Saharan Africa... Previous research in Zambia suggests that exposure to SV is equally pervasive among adolescent girls... The risks associated with SV, especially among young women, are numerous... Building on the results of previous research in Zambia, which demonstrated that trained Victim Support Unit (VSU) police officers could effectively administer the emergency contraception pill to SV survivors, the Population Council, Zambia Police Service, and Ministry of Health aimed to assess the feasibility of having trained VSU police officers safely and effectively provide a PEP starter dose to SV survivors with immediate referral to comprehensive medical services... Service providers and policy makers in the police, medical, and social services sectors were trained on what constitutes SGBV; risks associated with SGBV; the rights of SV survivors; the Zambian government's multi-sectoral approach to managing SV cases; and specific interventions available to SV survivors, including PEP... VSU police officers and medical personnel also received additional training on how to safely and effectively initiate SV survivors on PEP at the police station with immediate referral to the nearest tertiary hospital for forensic evidence collection and comprehensive medical assessment and treatment... While 33% of eligible survivors who reported during official working hours received PEP, only 18% of those who reported on nights or weekends received PEP... No adverse events were reported as a result of trained VSU police officers providing PEP during the study period... The results from this feasibility study demonstrate that police officers can safely and effectively provide SV survivors with a 3-day starter pack of PEP and refer them to health services for follow-up.

No MeSH data available.