The content of this post originally appeared in The Roll Out, a Newsletter of CDC-Ethiopia and Partners, in December 2013.
Mainstreaming HIV/AIDS in Higher Education Institutions
The Roll Out, a Newsletter of CDC-Ethiopia and Partners
Since the issue of HIV/AIDS was brought forward as one of the major health challenges of Ethiopia, lots of public and private organizations, including higher education institutions (HEI) in the country have been responding to it in many different ways. The interventions in most of these HEIs are characterized by sidelined, on the fringe activities with lack of coordination and sustainability. As HIV/AIDS continues to be a threat and constitutes a big problem among colleges and universities in Ethiopia, there is a need for comprehensive, prompt and sustainable programming. Mainstreaming brings HIV/AIDS to the center of these organizations’ agendas along with the core activities, integrating it into the main objectives of the institutions.
By Tibebe Shenie, Country Director, NASTAD Ethiopia; Anne Sites, Senior Manager, Global Program, NASTAD; Alan Lifson, University of Minnesota and NASTAD Consultant
Produced by Ben Lifson, Lead Editor; Deborah Dillaway, Videography; Alan Lifson, Producer
Arba Minch is a rural town in the foothills of the Rift Valley in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ Region (SNNPR) of Ethiopia. In addition to the town, many people live in the surrounding villages, supporting themselves through farming and fishing. In SNNPR, the prevalence of HIV among adults is estimated at 1.5%. The Ethiopian government has made a strong commitment to provision of life-saving antiretroviral therapy (ART), with 249,174 adults and 16,000 children receiving ART as of 2012. However, among those enrolling in HIV care, approximately 25% were no longer retained in care after one year.
By Birhan Mengistu, Senior HIV Mainstreaming Specialist, NASTAD Ethiopia and Anna Carroll, Associate, Global Program, NASTAD
Birhan Mengistu, Senior HIV Mainstreaming Specialist, NASTAD Ethiopia
Every hour, an estimated 50 young women are newly infected with HIV. In many areas of the world, gender inequalities make it especially difficult for women to access HIV prevention, treatment, and care services. Even basic information about HIV is unattainable; UNAIDS estimates that only 38% of young women have accurate, comprehensive knowledge of HIV/AIDS.
This critical issue has not gone unnoticed in Ethiopia, where approximately 380,000 women over the age of 15 are living with HIV (the total population of Ethiopia is over 90 million). In 2009, we at NASTAD Ethiopia began working with the Federal HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control Office (HAPCO) to identify ways to support this at-risk population. Knowing that our membership of U.S. state AIDS directors had significant experience in delivery to scale of proven effective behavioral interventions targeting high risk populations through the CDC Diffused Evidence Based Interventions (DEBIs), we leveraged their skills and training expertise to modify and adapt selected DEBIs for implementation in Ethiopia. Continue reading