Aug01

FROM THE PIPELINE | Taking on a challenge – How an ambitious engineering goal led to an innovative MPT for HIV, HSV, and unintended pregnancy

Wednesday, 01 August 2018 Written by // Meredith Roberts Clark, Kathleen Dietz Series // From the Pipeline Tags // challenge, clinical study, intravaginal ring, women

It all started with the simple realization that women seeking protection against HIV also want to prevent unintended pregnancies. In general, they also prefer a combined method. Then followed the innovation challenge: Engineer a long-acting intravaginal ring that could release two chemically diverse drugs – one for HIV and herpes simplex virus (HSV) prevention, and one for contraception – at sustained, controlled, and yet extremely different release rates (up to 1000-fold) for 3 months; make it suitable and scalable for use in resource-limited countries, such as those of sub-Saharan Africa; and design it so women would want to use it. Even now it’s a daunting task. When this project began, 10 years ago, its feasibility was questioned by many, including our collaborators and ourselves. However, if successful, this challenge had strong potential to provide a truly game-changing MPT solution to a dire unmet need for women globally.

Jul18

Mathematical modelling and its potential to inform MPT development

Wednesday, 18 July 2018 Tags // cost-effective, development, impact, modelling, product

One of the ongoing challenges in the MPT field is that, because MPT products are not yet commercially available (aside from male and female condoms), we do not have ‘real world’ data to inform product development, introduction, and investment decisions. Given this, MPT product developers, researchers, and funders must grapple with critical questions, such as: How impactful do these products need to be for me to consider funding or starting a product development program? Is that impact potential achievable, and under what conditions? How efficacious would the product need to be? What is the market for the product? How many people would need to use the product correctly and consistently? What associated costs will make a product cost-effective or cost-saving?

Jun28

Looking ahead: The role of healthcare providers in the success of MPTs

Thursday, 28 June 2018 Tags // experience, gatekeepers, healthcare, patients, prevention, providers, survey

As a healthcare provider, your perspective matters in the movement to advance the field of multipurpose prevention technologies (MPTs). Physicians, nurses, community health workers, pharmacists, and other healthcare providers are critical “gatekeepers” of health products and information with their clients and in their communities, and thus they have a big impact on their patients’ health behaviors and outcomes. Fostering a trustworthy healthcare environment has been linked to increased comfort levels and better patient health, as well as increased medication adherence.  You will be on the frontlines of ensuring the success of MPTs once they hit the market – giving patients access to such products and helping them with correct and consistent use.

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