Fall WRI Virtual 2021 - Research at the Intersection of HIV and Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health

Submitted on Feb 10, 2022


The Women's Research Initiative on HIV/AIDS (WRI), a program of The Well Project, convened Fall WRI Virtual 2021: Research at the Intersection of HIV and Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health: Best Practices, Gaps, and Barriers on October 7-8, 2021. The meeting sought to comprehensively examine the intersection of HIV and women's sexual and reproductive health, a relatively underexplored area of HIV research. (Click here or below to view the Issue Brief.)



Highlights from the meeting include:

  • Research and policy around this topic must be grounded in its historical context, including the ways in which women have been marginalized and Black people (Black women in particular) and other people of color have been abused by the medical establishment.
  • Despite playing a fundamental role in women's health and well-being, sexual and reproductive health remains disconnected from HIV prevention, care, research, and policy, which has contributed to failures in reaching and serving women.
  • Appropriate, relevant, and holistic sexual and reproductive health care for women living with and vulnerable to HIV must acknowledge and address women's lives in all of their complexities (including race, socioeconomics, gender identity, motherhood/care provision, geography, etc.).
  • To optimize reproductive and sexual health among women living with HIV, HIV treatment success must no longer be measured exclusively by viral suppression. Rather, metrics of treatment success, including those driving federal strategies, must center the well-being of women living with HIV, including their sexual health and pleasure
  • HIV prevention efforts require an urgent reframing of the language of "risk" around vulnerability to HIV and shifting to a framework that prioritizes resilience and strength in order to be successful among women.

While the meeting elicited a number of important recommendations, on an overarching level, the group again asserted the need to consider any recommendations around the health of women living with and vulnerable within the full context of their lives. This is particularly true in developing holistic sexual and reproductive health care for women living with and vulnerable to HIV.

View the Fall WRI Virtual 2021 Issue Brief: Interrogating the Intersection of HIV and Women's Sexual and Reproductive Health


Fall WRI Virtual 2021 Meeting Participants

Adaora Adimora, MD, MPH*
University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine
Judith D. Auerbach, PhD*
University of California San Francisco (UCSF)
Dawn Averitt*
The Well Project
Gina Brown, RSW
Southern AIDS Coalition
Gina Brown, MD
Gilead Sciences
Danielle Campbell
Abby Ria Charles, MPH
Institute for Public Health Innovation
Vignetta Charles, PhD
Cecilia Chung
Transgender Law Center
Jenna Conley*
The Well Project
Elizabeth Connick, MD
University of Arizona
Porchia Dees, BS
The Well Project
Antigone Dempsey, MEd
Dazon Dixon Diallo, DHL, MPH
Karine Dube, DrPh
UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health
Olivia Ford
The Well Project
Neha Gahlawat, PharmD, MBA, RPh
Sarit Golub, PhD, MPH
Hunter College
Maureen Goodenow, PhD
Office of AIDS Research
Rowena Johnston, PhD
Jennifer Kates, PhD*
Kaiser Family Foundation
Naina Khanna
Positive Women/s Network
Aryah Lester
Transgender Strategy Center
Carmen Logie, PhD
University of Toronto
Edward Machtinger, MD
UCSF Women's HIV Program
Krista Martel*
The Well Project
Tonia Poteat, PhD, MPH, PA-C
Bre Rivera
Black Trans Fund
Linda Scruggs, MHS*
Vani Vannappagari, MBBS, MPH, PhD
ViiV Healthcare
Fulvia Veronese, PhD*
National Institutes of Health
Celeste Watkins-Hayes, PhD
University of Michigan
Andrea Weddle, MSW
HIV Medicine Association
Charles Wira, PhD
Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth

*Fall 2021 Advisory Board Member

The Fall WRI Virtual 2021 convening received sponsorship support or grants from Gilead, Janssen, Merck, and ViiV Healthcare.



Members of The Well Project community at USCHA 2022.

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