CDC Leaders Underscore the Pivotal Role of Labs
in the Fight against HIV and TB Globally
Two articles published this month by CDC leadership in The Lancethighlighted the critical need for sustained investment in quality HIV diagnostics to achieve the UNAIDS 90-90-90 global HIV goals by 2030.
In a commentary in The Lancet HIV, Dr. Shannon Hader, Director of CDC’s Division of Global HIV & TB (DGHT); Dr. John N. Nkengasong, CGH Acting Principal Deputy; and Dr. Bharat S. Parekh, Team Lead, HIV Serology & Incidence for DGHT’s International Laboratory Branch state that “the rights to accurate diagnostics have received little attention” and caution that “misdiagnosis of individuals as either HIV positive or negative has huge consequences.” They call on the global community to find ways to operationalize quality-assured HIV test results as they strive to end the HIV epidemic.
CDC International Laboratory Branch leaders, Dennis Ellenberger, PhD, Andrea Kim, PhD, and John N. Nkengasong, PhD, MSc, and other global health community leaders also discussed the importance of viral load testing in the monitoring and treatment of HIV in a second article published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases this month. In the personal view article, the CDC scientists call attention to “research showing the benefits of suppressed viral load for the individual and the whole population” and propose a new framework to accelerate viral load scale-up and ensure equitable access to this essential test, especially in low-resources settings.
To read the full articles or learn more about CDC’s efforts working alongside Ministries of Health, community organizations and other partners to strengthen laboratory systems and build capacity, CDC’s Division of Global HIV & TB offers the following resources:
- The Lancet HIV commentary: “HIV testing and human rights: the right to the right test.”
- The Lancet Infectious Diseases personal view article: “Early antiretroviral therapy initiation: access and equity of viral load testing for HIV treatment monitoring.”
- An overview of CDC’s work to develop high quality laboratories around the world.
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