WHO to release HIV guidelines for key populations at AIDS 2014

12-14 March 2014 – WHO Geneva, Switzerland

The HIV Department has convened the Guideline Development Group (GDG) for the development of the consolidated guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care for key populations.

The GDG is a group of international experts, researchers, representatives from civil society organizations and HIV programmes in countries, advising WHO on structure, content and key recommendations to be included in the guidelines. The final release will take place at the 20th International AIDS Conference to take place on July 24-27 in Melbourne, Australia.

WHO has released the first-ever guidelines for HIV in men who have sex with men and transgender people in 2011, and guidelines for sex workers in 2012, building on earlier work addressing the needs of people who inject drugs and HIV in prison settings.

The upcoming will therefore be the first time WHO releases HIV recommendations focusing on all five key population groups currently identified as the groups most vulnerable to HIV. The groups include men who have sex with men, transgender people, people who inject drugs, sex workers, and people in prisons. Needs of young people and adolescents belonging to any of the key population groups will also be assessed.

Such key populations continue to present higher rates of HIV across all regions, with less access and enrolment in HIV services. Evidence-based, targeted HIV policies and programmes can help reducing HIV among these key populations, and more support is needed for countries to strengthen HIV programmes involving key populations.