Print this page    •   Back to Web version of article

Medical News
WHO Confirms Recommendations Regarding HIV, Female Hormonal Contraceptives After Review of Studies

February 17, 2012

"A stakeholder consultation convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) in Geneva has reviewed recent epidemiological studies related to HIV transmission and acquisition by women using hormonal contraceptives," a UNAIDS press statement reports (2/16). In a technical statement (.pdf), "[t]he Geneva-based United Nations health agency confirmed its existing recommendations [Thursday] after a study published last year found using contraceptive injections doubles the chance women will catch HIV and transmit it to a male partner," Bloomberg Businessweek reports (Hallam, 2/16). The WHO "concluded that hormonal contraception -- whether the pill or injection -- was safe for women at risk of HIV to use if they wanted to prevent pregnancy," the Guardian notes (Boseley, 2/16).

According to a WHO media note, the agency recommends there be "no restrictions on the use of any hormonal contraceptive method for women living with HIV or at high risk of HIV," and "[c]ouples seeking to prevent both unintended pregnancy and HIV should be strongly advised to use dual protection -- condoms and another effective contraceptive method, such as hormonal contraceptives" (2/16). "UNAIDS recommends that people who are sexually active -- particularly women and girls -- have full access to information and counseling to make informed choices about their sexual and reproductive health needs," the U.N. News Centre writes (2/16).

Back to other news for February 2012

This information was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report, search the archives, and sign up for email delivery. © Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.

This article was provided by Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. It is a part of the publication Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report. You can find this article online by typing this address into your Web browser:

General Disclaimer: is designed for educational purposes only and is not engaged in rendering medical advice or professional services. The information provided through should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or a disease. It is not a substitute for professional care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, consult your health care provider.