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Zambia site hosts first VITALITY Participant Advisory Board

On 15th Dec 2021, Zambia VITALITY study staff, Molly and Emly, held the first meeting with members of the newly formed Participant Advisory Board. Zimbabwe held their inaugural meeting in November and both Boards are governed by carefully considered Terms of Reference which have been agreed by the respective members.

The Zambia Board members comprises two VITALITY participants, two community health workers (from different communities), one member of staff from Kalingalinga Health Centre, ART department, plus Emely and Molly.

The members are enthusiastic about the formation of the Board and this opportunity to be briefed on the VITALITY study and discuss any relevant issues on a regular basis. The PAB would have liked the age range of the participants to be broader but as explained, this is not possible.

The study and its objectives are well received by all and staff attitudes and approach are seen in a positive light. Some concerns were voiced as to the size of the tablets and the aftertaste of Vitamin D which VITALITY staff noted and will consider how best to make the tablets more palatable going forward. But the key issue that arose was adherence which occupied much of the discussion at this first meeting and given its importance, will be an agenda item to be included at all future meetings.

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