Genesis has been commissioned to do the second phase of the rollout of a new device that has been shown to reduce HIV-1 infections in women by about 30%.
Earlier this year the the International Partnership of Microbicides (IPM) contracted Genesis to conduct a branding study for the new device that has been shown to reduce HIV-1 infections in women between the ages of 18 and 45 years.
The Dapivirine Vaginal Ring (DVR) is made of a flexible silicone matrix polymer containing the ARV dapivirine, which is slowly released over the course of a month. The ring delivers the dapivirine directly at the site of potential infection. The long-acting ring can be replaced every month.
Based on our recommendations on the name of the DVR through the branding study, IPM has applied for regulatory approval from the relevant authorities including the Medicines Control Council of South Africa and the US Food and Drug Administration. IPM now seeks to identify the preferences of potential end users with respect to the packaging design of the DVR.
IPM has asked Genesis to test six packaging designs with potential users. The tests will be done through focus-group discussions in South Africa and Uganda.This is to ensure the design is appropriate, acceptable and appealing. The insights and conclusions drawn from these focus groups will allow IPM to refine the design of the packaging before proceeding to production.
To date, women have not had a female-controlled method, so it is important that the DVR be packaged well to ensure maximum acceptability and uptake.