The global response to the HIV/AIDS epidemic has become more effective with the introduction of universal access programs. Increased coverage of antiretroviral therapy (ART) through these programs has brought benefit to affected persons in low- as well as high-income countries and has significantly reduced morbidity and mortality. This is the case in Southern Africa as well, where a large proportion of the HIV-infected people in the world live. However, health system constraints continue to pose considerable barriers to the roll out of ART services in these countries. In addition many people are confronted with other, non health system or finance barriers to access that continue to limit uptake of HIV testing and antiretroviral therapy. At Swiss TPH, several groups are conducting research aimed at improving equity, cultural sensitivity and support in all aspects of access to HIV care, including prevention, diagnosis, treatment, and support.

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