Sex Workers' Access to HIV Treatment Around the World


The information in this report summarises the findings of five briefing papers on sex workers’ access to HIV treatment in five regions: Africa; Asia Pacific; Europe; Latin America; and North America and the Caribbean. Research was carried out by regional consultants through online surveys and meetings with sex worker-led organisations and individuals, to identify the multiple barriers to ensuring access to appropriate health care for those living with HIV.

Stigma and discrimination are behind many of these barriers. Whorephobia, homophobia, transphobia, racism, and other prejudices, including prejudice against PLHIV, may be espoused by health care staff and backed up by legal measures against sex workers, LGBT people, migrants and HIV-positive people. Furthermore, those who are unable to pay for private health care may be eligible only for limited treatment – or none at all. Access to life-saving HIV drugs is further complicated in many developing countries whose domestic supplies have been interfered with by international free trade regulations. The effects of these cannot be underestimated.

Contents include:

  • Introduction
  • Barriers to Effective HIV Treatment for Sex Workers
    • Marginalisation
    • Legal Restrictions and Their Effects
    • Interactions with Health Care Services
    • Funding
    • Availability and Accessibility of Medicines
    • Effects of International Trade Agreements
  • Recommendations
    • Legislation and Rights
    • Funding
    • Community Empowerment
    • Harm Reduction and Health Care Provision
    • International Trade Agreements


You can download this 15-page PDF above. This resource is in English.