|We can’t end #AIDS without ending #TB! Day 4|
HIV and TB co-infection relationship is so intertwined such that ending HIV has a direct connection with doing the same on TB. Humana People to People has noted such trends among its TCE projects in Africa and Asia especially how most of the victims of HIV infection ends up infected with Tuberculosis as they progress with life.
Aids2016.org indicates that today, there are 36.9 million people living with HIV/AIDS and more than 95% of those living with HIV are in developing countries where access to effective health care is often challenging. The recent Global Report on Tuberculosis (TB) reveal that TB is one of the world’s deadliest communicable diseases with more than 9 million people developing TB annually as well as 1.5 million dying from the disease each year. What makes the TB case much difficult is the fact that public understanding of TB is limited and conversations around the importance of active awareness of TB treatment at community level is basically isolated.
The gravity of the HIV and TB problems are ideally the same even in India where Humana People to People India has been carrying out HIV and AIDS programs since 2004
Responding to HIV and AIDS in India
For the past 12 years Humana People to People India has gone to implement 16 HIV and AIDS programs in the states of Rajasthan, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Pondicherry, Haryana, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh.
Key objectives of Humana People to People India’s HIV and AIDS fight include:
Overall, Humana People to People India has adopted two key implementation strategies in its HIV and AIDS and TB co-programming.
HOPE Humana Centres: The Hope Humana Centres have adopted the targeted intervention approach of the National AIDS Control Program of India. The approach aims at curbing HIV transmission among high risk groups like Female Sex Workers (FSWs) and migrants workers. The methods of reaching out to the key population are through Behavior Change Communication (BCC), condom promotion, basic counseling about Sexually Transmitted Infections (STI) including its treatment. Currently one HOPE Humana project is operational in Delhi. The project has shown success in curbing STI and HIV transmission among 1.000 Female Sex Workers. The project in Haryana, which recently has completed, has seen an improvement on adoption of safe sex practices among 10.000 migrant workers.
Total Control of the Epidemic (TCE): Under this program the TCE Field Officers visit every household of the operational area, help the household members to assess their risk of HIV transmission, motivate and mobilize them to go for HIV testing. The strategy has been adopted from the highly successful TCE model, which was developed by the Humana People to People Federation, launched in Zimbabwe in year 2000, and presently implemented in six HIV and AIDS-affected countries of Sub-Saharan Africa.
Currently there are five TCE projects in operation in the states of Delhi, Bihar and Uttar-Pradesh. The project of Delhi tested 109,000 people through home-based Hematocrit Test (HCT) during 2011 - 2016. The other TCE projects are supported by the government’s HIV and AIDS program called Link-Worker Schemes supervised by National AIDS Control Program. The SAKSHAM project in Bihar designed on the lines of the TCE model and currently enables more than 2.000 HIV-infected women, trafficked women and sex workers to live a socially productive life through various dignified economic livelihood opportunities.
Responding to TB in India
To curb the unabated upswing in TB incidents in India, the world’s highest TB infected country, Humana People to People India initiated its TB interventions in 20 projects across India in 2015.
Humana People to People India has recently partnered with The International Union Against Tuberculosis and Lung Disease better known as The Union for implementation of ‘Project Axshya’ in selected slums of Delhi to increase TB case notification through house-to-house active case search strategy across 250,000 households along with establishment of Axshya Kiosks with ‘Flexi DOT’ services for provision of DOT (Directly Observed Treatment) to TB patients before and after normal work hours.
Besides, Humana People to People India has been continuing its integrated TB care and control activities through the ongoing development projects in Delhi, Haryana, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar. The mainstreaming intends to scale-up TB diagnostic and treatment capacity to prevent emergence of drug resistance through improved access to quality TB care using a community 'ownership' and civil society-led public health programming model.
As an add-on initiative these projects are presently keeping close accounts of presumptive TB cases identified through their routine community outreach activities and their diagnostic outcomes after referrals to government labs. The integrated approach helped to notify substantial number of TB cases from hard-to-reach, marginalized communities of those states. Since January 2015 to May 2016 the integration initiative found 177 TB cases, helped 164 TB patients to know their HIV status and went to screen 257 People Living with HIV against TB infection.
For more information do visit the following sites: