Over the course of the HAI-PEPFAR project, the HAI team has been working to scale up and expand access to comprehensive HIV/AIDS care and treatment while strengthening the capacity of national structures and providing sustainable service delivery. The project builds on PEPFAR and MSHP policies to implement critical interventions for HIV prevention, care, and treatment and develop partnerships with local NGOs to promote sustainable HIV support activities.
Project LINKS (which stands for Leadership, Impact, National Engagement, Knowledge, Sustainability), employs a five-pronged approach which promotes: 1) strengthening local MSLS leadership; 2) employing high-impact strategies; 3) building local NGO capacity; 4) reinforcing strategic information systems; and 5) establishing a clear transition plan for PEPFAR activities to local stewardship.
Project LINKS emphasizes key cost-effective interventions in regions and communities with the highest HIV prevalence. We help organize health facilities to identify and treat HIV-positive women (and their children) who missed prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) care or were lost to follow-up. A major focus is to ensure that eligible HIV-positive people are initiated on antiretroviral therapy as soon as appropriate, and that measures are taken for prophylaxis, infant feeding, infant tracking for 6-week polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing as available, and clinical follow-up with HIV testing at 18 months.
HAI staff also work with local community-based organizations to ensure a strong link between health facilities and the communities they serve. Social workers are placed at health facilities to provide pre- and post-test counseling and to organize essential monthly support groups for people living with HIV and their families. They also do home visits to ensure that people with HIV don’t drop out of the health care system.
Over the course of the five-year project, HAI is working to transition Project LINKS activities to local stewardship, led by the MSHP and Ivorian non-governmental organizations to ensure ongoing support of health systems in Côte d’Ivoire.
This project is funded by CDC/PEPFAR.