HIV-inclusive and -sensitive cash transfer initiatives: evidence from high-prevalence countries in Eastern and Southern Africa

There is growing consensus that the tools and knowledge exist to end the HIV/AIDS epidemic as a public health threat by 2030. To reach this goal, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) has established the 90-90-90 strategy, which aims to ensure that by 2020, 90 per cent of people living with HIV know their HIV status, 90 per cent of people living with HIV receive sustained antiretroviral therapy (ART), and 90 per cent of those receiving ART achieve viral suppression (UNAIDS 2014a).

Social protection initiatives, which tackle vulnerability and poverty through cash and social transfers, have been increasingly promoted as a tool to achieve the 90-90-90 outcomes, reduce the spread of the disease and mitigate the poverty burden on people infected with or affected by HIV. Accordingly, social protection has the potential to address the socio-economic drivers of HIV/AIDS and provide people with access to health, education and care services with the potential to induce beneficial behavioural changes.