WHO’s role in research focuses primarily on guiding and coordinating research efforts, strengthening the evidence basis for interventions and bridging between research and policy and programming. WHO plays this role mainly by convening international meetings, conducting reviews and syntheses of existing evidence, and initiating multi-country studies, often in partnership with other key players. Enhancing developing country research capacity and strengthening of north-south and south-south partnerships are important goals.
Effectiveness of InterventionsWHO is also conducting systematic reviews of intervention effectiveness, focusing on interventions for HIV prevention and care. This exercise, in partnership with Johns Hopkins University and the Populations Council’s Horizons Project, has developed sophisticated mechanisms for searching, retrieving, cataloguing, coding and analyzing articles, papers and reports of intervention effectiveness. When evidence of effectiveness is found, and information on costs of the intervention can also be obtained, then this exercise includes cost-effectiveness modelling as well. Currently twelve interventions are being analyzed with others planned for the coming year. Future plans include more sophisticated modelling to allow the effectiveness of packages of interventions, a more accurate reflection of multi-faceted country programmes, to be estimated for different contexts. Numerous manuscripts are currently in preparation.
Summaries of Meetings and Special Projects
- Unsafe Injection Practices and HIV Infection
- Reconciling Survey and Surveillance-based Estimates
- Consultative meeting to review the impact of scaling up anti-retroviral therapy (ART) on the HIV epidemic – what can longitudinal community studies contribute to the evidence base?
Evidence Building in Other WHO Departments
WHO’s activities related to building evidence for public health are located in various departments. These activities include:
- The WHO/UNAIDS HIV Vaccine Initiative
- Mother-to-child transmission of HIV (1)
- Mother-to-child transmission of HIV (2)
- Effectiveness of condoms in preventing sexually transmitted infections including HIV
- The female condom
- Improving care and management of young children with symptomatic HIV infection
- HIV/AIDS and adolescents
- Access to HIV/AIDS related medicines
- HIV diagnostics
- Tuberculosis and HIV
- Drug Resistance: HIV/AIDS