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Center for Social Expertise

“Interventional research “Self-testing among men having sex with men”.

There search is being implemented by SE “CenterforSocialExpertisenamedafterYu. Saenko” on request of the Ukrainian Center for Public Health Ministry of Health of Ukraine.

Project Manager: Trofymenko O.V.

Implementation period: 09.2018 – 06.2019

The purpose of the study was to investigate the possibilities and obstacles to implementing the self-testingprogramfor HIV inUkraine among men who have sex with men (MSM) and to provide recommendations for the development of a self-testing for warding strategy.

Objectives of the study:

  • Assess the readiness of service providers and clients to implement a self-testing program for HIV among men who have sex with men (MSM).
  • Identify the benefits, barriers and risks of implementing a self-testing program for HIV among MSM (from the point of view of providers and users of services).
  • Describe the advantages, disadvantages and complexities of HIV self-testing using saliva and blood, from the point of view of service clients, service providers and experts.
  • Estimate, in terms of clients, the convenience of using such tests in comparison with the assisted testing service.
  • Develop information materials to be provided in conjunction with tests and test them with clients for clarity, completeness and logic, and also, based on the results of the study, identify a self-testing package for MSM (for example, an HIV test, a napkin, an infomaterial / redirect, condom and lubricant).
  • Provide guidance on the approach to implementing a testing program and redirect strategy.
  • Identify subgroups / cross-groups of MSM for whom the self-testing model is more acceptable and effective.

Methods of research: qualitative, quantitative, statistical.

The study consists of several components:

  1. Deskre search to study international recommendations for the implementation of self-testing, the results of which will be:
  2. the main approaches to the implementation of self-testing are identified;
  3. international experience in introducing self-testing among MSM by governmental and non-governmental organizations are studied;
  4. The preliminary redirection concept has been developed (including informational materials and a self-testing package to be provided along with the tests).

Aspart of this phase, consultations will also beheld with expertson HIV / AIDS atthenational level (including expertsin providing HIV testing services) to form a scenarioforin-depthinter views.

II Qualitative research to examine the view sofservice providers and clients on the implementation of the testing program. As part of the study, service clients will test twotypesof tests for self-testingon HIV (salivaandblood) and evaluate the irconveniencecompared to assisted testing.

In this phase, it is alsoplanned to evaluate the information materials and the package before the test for completeness and logic.

ІІІ Quantitative on line research to quantify the key results of a qualitativestage, namely:

  • Attitude towards self-testing;
  • anticipated advantages and disadvantages of self-testing;
  • readiness to follow the referral guidelines;
  • readiness to buy tests at the pharmacy on their own: expectatedprice;
  • need for additional materials and services, etc.

Geography of the study: Kiev,Kharkiv, Dnipro, Odessa, Zaporizhya, Kherson.

Study sample: 400 standardized interviews, 120 in-depth interviews, 10consultations with National Level experts.