CFAR Awards

Andrea Wirtz, MHS

Emergency Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

International Research Scholar Award

An assessment of HIV risks and exposure to HIV services for male survivors of Gender Based Violence

Andrea Wirtz, MHS - Image

An assessment of HIV risks and exposure to HIV services for male survivors of GBV: pilot study to investigate the use of a screening tool to identify sexual violence for referral to HIV servicces among conflict-affected populations.

This proposal focuses on developmental research among male refugee populations (aged > 15 years) in Uganda and seeks to 1) incorporate an HIV research component to assess HIV-related needs and potential linkage to HIV services through GBV screening.. The proposal builds on the experience and support of the research team on the development of ASIST-GBV among conflict affected populations; partnership with Refugee Law Project (RLP), an organization which provides GBV services for male survivors of GBV in Kampala and refugee settlements; and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugee (UNHCR), who provides services for refugees/IDPs and with whom we have previously partnered on projects for women and girls in Ethiopia and Colombia.
The specific aims of this study are to 1) quantitatively assess exposure to HIV prevention, testing, and care, as reported by male refugee participants (no biologic specimens will be collected), 2) assess self-reported HIV status among male refugees, comparing sexual violence (SV) survivors to males from the general refugee population, 3) quantitatively assess acceptability of linkage to confidential HIV testing and counseling (HTC) among screened refugees, and 4) qualitatively assess service provider perspectives and acceptability regarding linkage of the ASIST-GBV to HTC and HIV services. This HIV component will provide pilot data on the exposure, self-reported HIV status, and access to HIV services among male SV survivors. These data will be multi-purpose. The primary purpose of the pilot data is to submit proposal of a larger study to conduct biologic assessment of HIV prevalence among male SV survivors in refugee settings and test the feasibility of the ASIST-GBV to link survivors to HIV testing/care. Secondary outcomes will be 1) the use of data to inform future mathematical modeling to estimate impacts of reducing SV among conflict-affected populations, and 2) the use of data for partner organizations (RLP and UNHCR) to advocate for and inform HIV programming for male refugees and survivors of SV.