Solthis Solidarité Thérapeutique et Initiatives pour la Santé

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Support for the National HIV/AIDS Treatment Program in 10 health centres in Freetown

SIERRA LEONECAPACITY BUILDINGSTRENGTHENING SYSTEMS AND HEALTH SERVICESHEALTH PRODUCTS AND PHARMACEUTICAL SYSTEMLABORATORIES AND TECHNICAL PLATFORMSGOVERNANCE AND HEALTH POLICIESHEALTH INFORMATION SYSTEMHIV / AIDS

The issues

The HIV/AIDS epidemic affects 1.6% of the adult population in Sierra Leone. The number of people living with HIV (PLHIV) was estimated at 52,000 in 2014. The epidemic is tending to stabilize, but the coverage of treatment needs is still too low. Significant disparities persist, with the epidemic having more of an impact on women, in urban areas and on the groups considered as being most at risk of infection, such as sex workers or men who have sex with men.

Sierra Leone has implemented a national strategic plan to control HIV/AIDS, based on prevention, treatment and care. When antiretroviral treatment for HIV-positive patients began in 2005, 24 health care institutions in the public health system had a dedicated HIV team: the 13 district hospitals, plus five hospitals and six health centres in Freetown. The delegation of tasks model quickly helped to decentralize treatment throughout the country and by 2011, there were 130 centres.

In 2014, Solthis supported 10 sites in Freetown.

Start date: October 2011

Intervention areas: Sierra Leone

Budget: €1,850,056

Funding source: Bettencourt Schueller Foundation

 

Objectives

Solthis focuses its actions on three main objectives with the aim of helping to improve access to high-quality treatment for PLHIV on an ongoing, sustainable basis:

  • Improve access to treatment with an emphasis on paediatrics and prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT)
  • Improve the quality of HIV treatment in health care facilities in the city, by strengthening coordination between paediatric services, PMTCT and HIV
  • Improve data-collection tools to avoid an increase in patients lost to follow-up.

 

Activities

Support for health policies

  • Support and advice to the Ministry of Health to develop strategic documents and national therapeutic protocols
  • Funding for South-South training
  • Funding for operational research projects

 

Improvements in infrastructure

  • Provision of medical and laboratory equipment
  • Support for computerization of patient databases

 

Organizational advice

  • Support and advice for managers in the pharmaceuticals sector on procurement and supply management (PSM) of medical supplies for HIV
  • Organization of regional treatment committees and national discussion workshops on treatment
  • Organization of monthly support groups for PLHIV

 

Skills development

  • Development of training modules
  • Classroom-based training based on active and participatory learning techniques (use of exercises, role plays, discussions and sharing experiences, using case studies to transfer knowledge and skills to participants)
  • Clinical tutoring for care teams

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