This newsletter is also available in French. Please contact email@example.com.
Volume IX Issue 1:
Expert Patients Programme Update
Poster display at the 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS2014), Melbourne, Australia
Team PATA at the symposium on Children and HIV, Melbourne, Australia
Voluntary Male Circumcision
The PATA 2014 Continental Summit
Resources for PATA Network Members
1. Expert Patient Programme Update
The Expert Patient Programme enrolls members living with HIV who volunteer to model positive living, in support of paediatric patients and their families in various ART programmes, such as ART, Pre-ART, and PMTCT. Expert Patients are crucial in educating fellow patients on issues of drug adherence, positive living, and psychosocial support. In addition, Expert Patients serve a task shifting role by supporting with clerical, counselling and patient triage tasks, thereby relieving healthcare workers of these tasks who then have increased time to care for paediatric patients.
At six and 12 months, Expert Patient supervisors report on Expert Patient activities in their clinics. PATA and One to One Children’s Fund use these reports to monitor the progress of the programme and to develop ways to improve the programme. Here are some excerpts from the 12 months reports:
‘In the community, PATA has helped me to empower myself and our clients about kitchen gardens; planting vegetables that help make our bodies stronger and reduce malnutrition amongst our children and clients. Every client has a kitchen garden in their home’
– Expert Patient, Kenya
‘I am a 35 years old pregnant woman, and I moved into this new city a few month ago and I stopped taking my ARVs for a long period. The Expert Patient and the nurse helped me realize how exposed my baby was and how careful I had to be. After being back on medication for some time, the counsellor took me to do my lab tests. The test results made me feel very happy because I could see the progress I had made. I returned home and have kept up visits. The Expert Patient understood and supported me psychologically. He came to visit and encouraged me at home. I now feel more confident and happy to visit the clinic more often’
– Patient, Cameroon.
‘The Expert Patients have developed a friendly relationship with the children and adolescents, and if there is anything that is not well with anyone of them they are the first to know. Expert Patients are always the first to provide information that is helpful in tracing LTFU amongst adolescents and children. Adolescents trust them, share confidential information and confide in them. This is very helpful.
– Expert Patient Supervisor, Tanzania.
Thank you to all the Expert Patients and their supervisors for their hard work this year.
2. 20th International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2014), Melbourne, Australia
PATA is happy to announce that their abstract on adolescent transition was accepted to be presented as a poster presentation at the 20th International AIDS Conference, 20-25 July 2014 Melbourne, Australia. The title of the poster is “Transitioning HIV-infected children and adolescents into adult HIV programmes: Barriers and recommendations from frontline HIV healthcare workers in sub-Saharan Africa”. The study concludes that there are gaps in transitioning services in sub-Saharan Africa, especially related to soft infrastructure such as training and policy. Key recommendations include better translation of plans into practice, with a focus on clinical and psychosocial support.
The data for this study was collected at the PATA 2013 East Africa Regional Forum which took place in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. PATA would like to thank all those involved in the study. It is hoped that ultimately this study will help influence policy and prioritize important thematic areas.
To read more about the conference, go to: http://www.aids2014.org/
3. Symposium on Children and HIV: Start Early, Start Now–Integrated interventions for young children born into HIV-affected families, Melbourne, Australia
In addition to the above mentioned poster presentation, PATA is proud and thrilled to share the acceptance of an abstract titled “Integrating early childhood development (ECD) programmes into the paediatric HIV treatment response: Community health worker programmes in sub-Saharan Africa at the forefront” to the symposium Children and HIV: Start Early, Start Now–Integrated interventions for young children born into HIV-affected families, which is an official affiliated event of the 20th International AIDS Conference.
The study concluded that CHW programmes are an effective vehicle for integrating ECD programmes into health facilities and that capacity in health facilities must include a commonly defined understanding of ECD, infrastructure and resources to facilitate the integration and implementation of ECD services against clear operational standards.
Luann Hatane, our Senior Programmes Manager will be representing PATA at the symposium as well as at AIDS 2014.
To read more about the symposium, go to: http://teresagr.ipower.com/melbourne/index.html
4. Voluntary Male Circumcision
In 2007, the World Health Organisation (WHO) in conjunction with the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), recommended male circumcision as a key prevention intervention based on evidence to suggest that male circumcision decreased the risk of heterosexual HIV transmission by between 50% and 60%.
PATA attended the VMMC (voluntary male medical circumcision) and EIMC (early infant male circumcision) Global Partners Meeting from the 18th-20th March 2014 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The meeting was organised by UNICEF, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) and the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR). The meeting provided an important update on advances in the prioritization of services for VMMC and a review on introducing EIMC as part of maternal, new born and child health (MNCH) services in the region.
The modelling tool DMPPT (Decision Makers Programme Planning Tool) used to support regional scale up, suggested that reaching 80% coverage (among men 15-49 years) in the 13 priority countries by 2015 would entail performing 20.34 million circumcisions between 2011 and 2015 and an additional 8.42 million between 2016 and 2025. Such a scale-up would result in averting 3.36 million new HIV infections through 2025. Scale-up would cost a total of US$2 billion between 2011 and 2025, and would result in net savings (due to averted treatment and care costs) amounting to US$16.51 billion.
Since start up, close to 6 million male circumcisions have been performed, reaching only 30% coverage of the 2015 target. To address low coverage it was proposed that programmes focus on a smaller sub population where there is existing demand. The potential role for EIMC scale-up within MNCH was presented as an effective strategy to make MC sustainable in the longer term.
Whilst EIMC in North and West African is common practise, rates of EIMC in Southern Africa continue to be low amidst cultural practises and beliefs. Staff capacity and existing restrictions on who is permitted to perform MC procedures may also need to be addressed to overcome existing barriers in promoting and integrating EIMC into MNCH services.
5. The PATA 2014 Continental Summit: Please forward key themes and topics for consideration and inclusion
Team PATA has begun preparations for the PATA 2014 Continental Summit, which will take place in the first week of December 2014.This year’s summit will see 40 multidisciplinary paediatric HIV treatment teams, each comprising of a doctor, nurse, pharmacist, counsellor and/ or community health worker come together to learn from world experts and share models of best practice.
Key to the PATA Summit process is knowledge translation, which allows teams of healthcare professionals to incorporate evidence-based information and examples of best practice into their own daily practice. This helps to optimise treatment outcomes and benefits the healthcare system as a whole.
Team PATA would like to invite its network members and partners to forward key themes and topics they would like to have considered for inclusion in the PATA 2014 Continental Summit. PATA also invites suggestions on activities that may further team-building and networking.
Please forward your thoughts and ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org.
6. Office News: PATA Welcomes New Staff
PATA is pleased to welcome two new staff members to our ever growing family, Liz Sineke as our Finance Manager, and Toby Runciman as our Research/ Monitoring and Evaluations Manager.Welcome! We are thrilled that you are joining our team!
7. Resources for PATA Network Members: IATT Toolkit
The Interagency Task Team toolkit “IATT Toolkit: Expanding and Simplifying Treatment for Pregnant Women Living with HIV: Managing the Transition to Option B/B+” is a compilation of tools and checklists that describe what should be considered when moving to Option B/B+. It guides countries in the planning and implementation of Option B/B+, as well as helping them scale up interventions and programmes that have been shown to be effective and hence can bring them closer to achieving the goals of the Global Plan.
The toolkit provides an important step in describing the numerous aspects that should be taken into account when transitioning to Option B/B+, including political, financial and programmatic factors. This makes it useful to countries in the process of thinking through key programmatic areas in relation to Option B/B+.
The toolkit can be downloaded online.
For English: http://www.emtct-iatt.org/toolkit/
For Portuguese: http://www.emtct-iatt.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/IATT-Toolkit-PORT.pdf
For French: http://www.emtct-iatt.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/IATTToolkit-FR.pdf
You can also find us on Twitter by following @teampata for weekly updates on PATA’s activities.