Teopista Nakayanzi is a member of the HPTN 084 Community Working Group and a community liaison with the Johns Hopkins University Research Collaboration at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. She was a co-principal investigator for the Academic Community Partnership NICHD/NIH supported grant that explored community-based participatory research methods in generating maternal and pediatric HIV disparities, research agenda, and dissemination strategies. Ms. Nakayanzi holds a bachelor’s degree in education and a post-graduate diploma in organizational psychology.
How did you first get involved with the HPTN?
My first involvement with HPTN was with HPTN 046 and HPTN 027, obtaining views from the community advisory board (CAB) and discussing the language used in the informed consents. Together with the CAB, we held community dialogues in preparation for the first infant HIV vaccine research study in Africa, which was conducted in Uganda.
What do you find most challenging about the work you do in support of the HPTN?
The need for more communications on new HIV prevention tools, so people can better understand pre-exposure prophylaxis (or PrEP) access and the ongoing research about other PrEP products.
What do you think will change about HIV prevention over the next five years?
The availability of new HIV prevention tools such as multipurpose prevention technologies as they might be a very attractive option for young women who want to prevent both HIV and pregnancy.
What do you wish other people knew about your work?
I have supported the establishment and training of more than seven CABs and contributed to the development of community engagement resource materials including Recommendations for Community Engagement in HIV/AIDS Research and A Trainers Manual for IMPAACT Community Advisory Board Training Curriculum.
What might someone be surprised to know about you?
I am a professional masseur, hardly practicing, but sometimes offering reflexology.
What do you do when you aren't working?
I enjoy visiting farms. I also grow white and yellow maize.