Pregnant women, children and adolescents are priority populations in the global public health response to the epidemics of HIV, TB and HCV. The high burden of intersecting epidemics of these 3 infections pose a major public health challenge to Russia and the broader European region. With that in mind, we worked towards the global health goals of ending AIDS, reducing TB deaths and new HCV cases by 90% by 2030. However, this can only be achieved if these unique health needs are considered and targeted research to these priority populations is carried out to optimise the impact of innovations in diagnostics and treatment. REACH built on long-standing, successful collaborations among European clinical research networks. These newtorks have proven track records of delivering innovative research across the three infections with leading collaborators from 7 centres of excellence in Siberian, Northwestern and Central districts of the Russian Federation.
Goals and objectives
The goals of REACH were:
- To conduct joint research to better understand the epidemiology, disease progression, treatment and outcomes of HIV, TB and HCV mono- and co-infections among pregnant women, children and adolescents in the RF, contributing to the reduction of related morbidity and mortality in these vulnerable groups
- To exchange knowledge, build capacity and prepare for future collaborative research on HIV, TB and HCV in children, adolescents and pregnant women in the Russian Federation, engaging and involving patients in all activities. REACH will fill the knowledge and data gaps on HIV epidemic affecting children, adolescents and pregnant women across Russia and provide new data on long-term ART toxicity, HIV resistance, HCV and TB coinfections and comorbidities in this setting.
- To build on progress towards an AIDS-free generation
The objectives of REACH were:
- To provide key data for future policies and practice on disease progression, comorbidities, performance of new diagnostic tests and response to treatment in children and adolescents with HIV, HCV and/or TB infection in the Russian Federation by conducting pooled analyses of individual patient data.
- To generate evidence to inform public health and clinical management policies in HIV-infected pregnant women and their infants by conducting pooled analyses of individual patient data in two high HIV prevalence Russian regions (St Petersburg and Irkutsk).
- To share knowledge, build capacity, achieve harmonisation of research approaches and set the stage for future collaborative studies addressing outstanding key questions in HIV, HCV and TB among pregnant women, children and adolescents in Russia and Europe.
- To foster clear communication within the consortium and ensure all stakeholders, including patients, families, healthcare providers, researchers and policy makers, are informed of project activities and outputs in an impactful, appropriate and timely manner, ensuring meaningful engagement at all levels.
- REACH Paediatrics to enrich and expand knowledge of burden of infection in children and adolescents
- REACH Pregnancy to enrich and expand knowledge of burden of infection in pregnant women and their infants
- REACH Forward for knowledge exchange, capacity building and future Russian-European collaboration
- REACH Outward to coordinate dissemination, communication and liaising with external advisory groups
- REACH Coordination for the Consortium management