EPHI Launches Study on Integrated Bio-Behavioral Survey (IBBS) among AGYW
The Ethiopian Public Health Institute’s (EPHI) HIV/TB Research Directorate (HTRD) is gearing up for a nationwide study on HIV prevalence among Adolescent Girls and Young Women (AGYW). To ensure the success of this crucial initiative, EPHI is currently providing comprehensive training for supervisors, data collectors, laboratory technicians, and coupon managers involved in the study.
Explaining the rationale behind the study, Dr. Gemechu Tadesse, Director of EPHI’s HIV/TB Research Directorate, highlighted the vulnerability of AGYWs to HIV, particularly during and after public health emergencies and conflicts. He emphasized the need for “evidence-based quality data” to design effective policies and strategies for protecting this vulnerable population.
Feyiso Bati, study coordinator and researcher at HTRD, shed light on the limited data available on HIV and risk behaviors among AGYWs in Ethiopia. He further pointed out the challenges they face in accessing HIV prevention, treatment, and healthcare services. The study aims to bridge these gaps by generating accurate and comprehensive data to inform targeted interventions.
Representatives from the regional and Woredas Administration, Health, and Education Bureaus actively participated in the training, pledging their support for the study’s success. They also raised valuable concerns to be addressed during the implementation phase.
Jaleta Bulti, HTRD HIV research team leader and facilitator of the training, emphasized the importance of thorough preparation. The ongoing training, which runs until February 6, 2024, ensures that all personnel involved in the study are equipped with the necessary knowledge and skills to collect accurate and reliable data.