KAMPALA, Uganda– Frontline AIDS has co-launched a brand-new practical guide to implementing and scaling up programmes to remove human rights related barriers to HIV services, the first of its kind.
Statistics show that over 6000 girls and women aged 15 – 24 contract HIV every week, and 54% of infections are among sex workers, transgender people, people who inject drugs, and men who have sex with men. These individuals are not only at the greatest risk of contracting HIV, but also have the greatest difficulty in accessing HIV-related services, as they encounter rights-related barriers including violence, stigma, discrimination, and punitive laws, policies and practices.
Many governments and their communities are committed to ending AIDS, and removing these rights-related barriers is essential. But evidence shows an insufficient level of technical expertise in applying the best responses and resources, and to monitoring them effectively.
The implementers’ guide is being developed by the help of governments, donors, and civil society organizations to help human rights’ activists, officials, and victims of rights-related barriers.
The guide aims to start conversations, build technical skills, and strengthen national health systems. It aims to do it in ways that effectively and sustainably remove rights-related barriers that stand in the way of ending AIDS.
It will help implementers of such programmes to: cost, monitor and evaluate programmes, effectively combine and implement them, use a comprehensive approach, achieve the right level of investment, increase meaningful local capacity, improve community engagement, strengthen health and community systems, and ensure sustainability.
The guide is structured around the four components of the Global Fund’s Investment Approach to HIV responses, which includes programmes to reduce human rights-related barriers; to understand human rights-related barriers to HIV services, which populations or groups are most affected by the barriers, and the programmes that can remove them; esign an evidence-based, comprehensive response to remove the barriers that is fully integrated within national strategies and programmes for HIV; eliver a comprehensive package of interventions at sufficient quality and scale to achieve sustained change in removing the barriers, and increasing access, uptake and retention in HIV services; and to sustain comprehensive responses through strategic investments and integration in order to accelerate progress towards eliminating HIV as a public health threat by 2030.
Here at UGANET, one of our main focus has been working together with other like minded organizations in ensuring the success of Health and HIV interventions intended to prevent further spread and also mitigate the adverse social impact and suffering caused by HIV and other Health conditions. This guide will be helpful in the realization of this vision.