Nationality: Sierra Leonean
Institution: Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital
Country of Work: Ghana
What is your motivation for engaging in HIV cure and remission research?
As a specialist physician in the area of HIV/infectious diseases for over 10 years and a clinical researcher, I’ve come to realize firsthand that PLWH desperately want a cure not only to avoid the stigma associated with the disease but also due to drug fatigue which causes them to default. In my setting they tend to resort to herbal medications or spiritual healing from herbalists and charlatan pastors respectively at exorbitant prices, with promises of a cure. They are later brought back to our facilities with advanced HIV infection and little money left for management of their condition with subsequent high mortality. These are the people motivating me to attend. I would want to contribute to ending a cure through engaging in research on HIV remission strategies
What is your current area of research?
I am the head of the HIV/infectious disease unit in the hospital where I work and so have had the unique advantage of being involved in various HIV related studies. These include studies on issues that hinder adherence to ART, such as post-disclosure violence against women in discordant relationships. I am also currently part of a study focused on barriers to antiretroviral therapy and the effect of tailored low cost interventions on adherence in order to improve the outcomes of patients on ART. In the near future I plan to develop a career in HIV remission and cure.