By 2007 over 40,000 were living with HIV in the UK and ‘positive prevention’ interventions were beginning to focus HIV prevention on people living with HIV. There was uncertainty about the efficacy of this approach, however, about how people with HIV manage risk and how their ability to prevent the transmission of HIV is linked to their mental health and social circumstances. The study analysed 44 individual and three group interviews with groups most affected by HIV in the UK including African heterosexual women and men and mostly white gay men.
The study found that participants had some similar needs as well as contextually different needs, particularly among women, when it came to negotiating safe sex and assimilating HIV prevention information. Findings revealed a range of issues including: taking ‘additional responsibility’ for partners; negotiating with partners who are willing to have unprotected (anal or vaginal) sex; links with mental health; constructing the moral ‘other’ and power differences. The authors sought to promote greater discussion of the priorities for positive prevention for men and women living with HIV in the UK.