HIV Case-based Surveillance in Haiti: Partnering for an Effective and Successful Response to the HIV Epidemic

By Edna Pierre, National HIV Surveillance Coordinator, NASTAD Haiti

Edna Photo

Edna Pierre, National HIV Surveillance Coordinator, NASTAD Haiti

Early in the national response to the HIV epidemic, the Haitian Ministry of Health (MSPP) prioritized the development of strategic information systems and identified NASTAD Haiti as a key partner with the technical expertise to implement a national HIV/AIDS case based surveillance system (HASS). NASTAD Haiti has supported this collaborative, national effort since 2003. Case based surveillance (CBS) data in Haiti are critical in monitoring the trends of the HIV epidemic, characterizing affected populations, identifying needs and gaps in testing, prevention, treatment and care services, and guiding resource allocation to areas of need across the HIV Continuum of Care.

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NASTAD Haiti Participates in ‘Innovations in Global Maternal and Child Health’ Symposium at University of Florida

By Dr. Nadjy Joseph, SAFE Project Coordinator, NASTAD Haiti

December 2015 will mark the end of the current United Nations Millennium Development Goals, which range from halving extreme poverty rates to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS to providing universal primary education.  Governments and civil society organizations are racing to continue to work towards fulfilling those goals, and are compiling reports and publications to demonstrate progress and gaps.

Nadjy Jospeh NASTAD

Dr. Nadjy Joseph speaking with symposium attendees about enhanced perinatal HIV case-based surveillance (SAFE) in Haiti.

In this context, the University of Florida convened its first annual Innovations in Global Health Symposium, with this inaugural year focused on maternal and child health. The aim of the symposium was to convene leading experts alongside University of Florida faculty and students to learn and teach innovative initiatives in global maternal and child health. Many themes were discussed during the two-day symposium, including health systems and policy, human rights and health, technology and climate change, and food security and nutrition. Continue reading

Celebrating NASTAD Botswana

By Lucy Slater, Director, Global Program

On March 31, 2015, due to cuts and realignments in PEPFAR funding, and after nearly 15 years of collaboration with partners in the country, NASTAD will be closing out its work in Botswana.

ALDP Master Trainers and participants during a training.

Botswana was one of the first countries to invite NASTAD to enter into a capacity building partnership, and our work there over the years is a microcosm of our work across the Global Program.

From the very start, we collaborated with the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLG-RD) and the District AIDS Coordinator teams—the public health counterparts to our U.S. membership of state health department AIDS directors—placing an emphasis on supporting the districts to plan and coordinate their HIV response. Continue reading

Celebrating 10 Years of Public Health System Strengthening in Zambia

By Lucy Slater, Director, Global Program

Like all organizations, NASTAD Global goes through cycles – cycles of staffing, cycles of scopes of work, and cycles of funding. In 2015, we approach a convergence of these cycles, and as some new opportunities are emerging, we are also finding that some existing work must end. As of March 31, 2015, the outcomes of NASTAD Global’s HIV health systems strengthening assistance for national government partners in Zambia will have been integrated into government structures and we will close the doors to our Zambia office.

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Transition from Community- to Facility-based I ACT Implementation in South Africa

By Dr. Tshiwela Neluheni, Country Director, NASTAD South Africa

Linkage to and retention in HIV care amongst people living with HIV (PLHIV) have been identified as serious challenges in South Africa, where the HIV prevalence rate among adults aged 15-49 is estimated to be 19.1%. In the age of Treatment as Prevention, and in a country with an estimated 6.3 million PLHIV – the greatest number of PLHIV in any country in the world – linkage to and retention in HIV care is particularly critical. In an effort to help improve these outcomes, NASTAD South Africa collaborated with Mpumalanga Provincial Department of Health (PDOH) and the Regional Training Centre (RTC) to implement the Integrated Access to Treatment and Care (I ACT) program.

Staff supporting I ACT Implementation in Ehlanzeni District, including two Support Group Facilitators, a Facility Operational Manager and a Professional Nurse.

The I ACT program focuses on helping PLHIV link to and be retained in care, as well as maintain adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART). The program targets people recently diagnosed with HIV and recruits them into community and health facility based pre-ART and ART care and support group sessions. These support group sessions provide critical information about HIV, healthy living strategies, and treatment and care options, and help improve retention in care from the time of HIV diagnosis through ART initiation to lifelong care and treatment.

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