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Living with HIV in the time of COVID-19: Report from a survey of networks of people living with HIV

A survey by GNP+, ICW and Y+ Global found that networks of people living with HIV are using innovative ways to ensure their peers and their communities continue to have access to the critical services that they need. This report showcases their achievements.

59 networks of people living with HIV and community organisations from 37 countries took part in the survey throughout April and May 2020 and shared the challenges they are facing and the strategies they have put in place to support their communities.

Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention Booklets

A series of materials that aims to improve the understanding of Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention. These booklets were written to support organisations to promote the meaningful engagement of people living with HIV in decisions that affect our lives.

 

 

 

 

Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention: What Does it Mean for Networks of People Living with HIV?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention: What Does It Mean for Me? 

 

Walking in our shoes

This report highlights the key factors that facilitate retention in care for women living with HIV and calls for increased focus on rights and dignity in care. The report presents the findings of community-led research related to the viewpoints and experiences of women who were initiated on antiretroviral treatment during pregnancy or breastfeeding and explores their perspectives on factors that have enabled them to successfully adhere to their treatment and retain in care.

The research for this report was coordinated jointly by GNP+ and the International Community of Women living with HIV (ICW) in partnership with ICW Eastern Africa and ICW Malawi and the Network of Zambian People living with HIV/AIDS (NZP+). This research, carried out by and for women living with HIV was conducted in three countries, Malawi, Uganda and Zambia, all of which are early implementers of the lifelong ARV treatment program (Option B+). Focus group discussions were held with women living with HIV who utilized services along with key informant interviews with healthcare workers, government representatives, international NGOs and community groups.

The aim of this research project is to develop a set of best practices on how healthcare systems can retain women living with HIV into lifelong care now that pregnant women living with HIV are being offered lifelong treatment. The report outlines from their own perspectives what factors help women living with HIV adhere to lifelong treatment and care.

UNITAID Communities Delegation Handbook

UNITAID is an innovative global health initiative that uses its long-term sustainable funding to support projects that positively impact the market for medicines, diagnostics and other health products for HIV/AIDS, TB and Malaria.

This handbook describes the mission and vision of the delegation and the Terms of Reference of the different delegation members.

2015 Annual Report

In 2015, all our problems were solved. Extreme poverty was eradicated, the environment saved, and some say we got gender equality — all of this in a context where universal access to HIV treatment was achieved in 2010!

People living with HIV always knew the Millennium Targets , those sacred vows by the member states of the United Nations, would not change the order of things. Yet instead of making the necessary paradigm shifts we engaged in a long process to formulate the Sustainable Development Goals. In the HIV response this meant adding more numbers — first we had 3 by 5, then we were Getting to Zero, and now it is 90-90-90.

At GNP+ we have not added new numbers. We still work to improve the quality of life of people living with HIV. We continue to advocate for universal access to quality HIV care and treatment for those who want and need it. Where numbers are concerned we believe, “universal” means “everyone”, not “everyone except the unpopular or unwanted”.

The magazine you are reading now — our annual report for 2015 — reflects the key initiatives we embarked, driven by our mission. This is our story. It relates how we support the engagement of young people and key populations living with HIV in decision making processes and reaffirmed their basic rights as human beings. It recounts how we fight to ensure the Global Fund work for all of us, and how we support the capacity of people living with HIV to do policy and programme analysis, do research on their own situation, and influence HIV responses.

Numbers may sometimes be useful, but in the end our work is about human beings. Ending the AIDS epidemic and ensuring the wellbeing of all affected must consist a broader, more holistic view that embraces differences. We want to show you how our movement — the movement of people living with living — has evolved to embrace diversity. We hope you enjoy our magazine and will join us to make sure the human rights of people living with HIV are protected in every corner of the world.

Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention for Women and their Babies

A treatment literacy guide for pregnant women and mothers living with HIV

Women living with HIV from eight countries have shared their expertise to shape the content and design of the guide and it was formulated in direct response to a call from communities for up-to-date, evidence-based resources.

Positive Health, Dignity and Prevention for Women and their Babies: A treatment literacy guide for pregnant women and mothers living with HIV is intended for use by networks of women living with HIV, women’s groups, peer educators and others wishing to provide information and guidance to support women living with HIV through the decisions they will need to make before, during and after their pregnancy.

The guide has 12 modules covering issues ranging from human rights to treatment adherence and nutrition. It is made up of three separate tools:

  • facilitator’s manual
  • illustrated flipchart
  • accessible poster

The facilitator’s manual and flipchart are intended to be used together by leaders of support groups, peer educators or lay counselors to facilitate small groups or community sessions with women living with HIV. The poster can be displayed anywhere where it will be seen by women living with HIV and their families, such as: clinic rooms, church halls, waiting rooms and community education spaces.

This guide was developed by members of the Community Engagement Working Group (CEWG) of the Inter-Agency Task Team (IATT) for Prevention and Treatment of HIV Infection in Pregnant Women, Mother and Children, a group committed to strengthening global, regional and national partnerships and programs that address the survival of pregnant women, mothers and children living with HIV.

Summary Demands High Level Meeting 2016

The United Nations will gather for the High Level Meeting on HIV on 8-10 June 2016. Many say this may be the last High Level Meeting on HIV ever. This also depends on whether member states dare to give the HIV response teeth with greater political commitments to fight stigma and discrimination, protect human rights and fundamental freedoms and ensure universal access to treatment, care and support for all people living with HIV.

This is our chance to move members states to come to an unequivocal agreement with clear, time bound targets that ensure the rights and protection of people living with HIV and key populations.

A ‘Zero Draft’ of the political declaration, developed by co-facilitators Switzerland and Zambia was just released. This key document lays the foundation of the negotiations towards the High Level Meeting this upcoming June.

This summary contains the key messages and principles we demand from our national delegates.

Community Guide Module I: HIV and Key Populations

In 2014, WHO produced the first ever Consolidated guidelines on HIV prevention, diagnosis, treatment and care for key populations. The Guidelines focus on five key populations: men who have sex with men; people who inject drugs; people in prisons and other closed settings; sex workers; and transgender people.

They present an opportunity for civil society, including networks of key populations and people living with HIV, to work with their governments to meaningfully involve key populations in national policymaking and begin investing in their specific needs. The Guidelines also offer an opening for dialogue and action on harmful laws, policies and societal norms that result in the denial and violation of human rights for key populations.

To support community organisation with the implementation of and advocacy for the Guidelines we created a new module for Key Populations to our Community Guide.

This set of modules is designed to be used by communities to support the use of the new resource, Driving the HIV response: A community guide to the WHO 2013 Consolidated Guidelines on the Use of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating and Preventing HIV Infection.

The downloadable modules cover different topics, and include:

The Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+), the International HIV/AIDS Alliance and STOP AIDS NOW! developed the Community Guide in response to the World Health Organization (WHO) 2013 Consolidated guidelines on the use of antiretroviral drugs for treating and preventing HIV. It aims to assist community leaders and civil society organisations to:

  • better understand the new WHO recommendations and guide country-level discussions on priorities (within civil society and between civil society and government)
  • ensure the meaningful participation of communities most affected by HIV in national decision-making and planning
  • advocate for any changes or further research necessary to adapt recommendations to suit their country context
  • mobilise and prepare communities for the implementation of new recommendations.

VCT@WORK Operational Guidelines

Respecting human rights in the implementation of the VCT@WORK initiative: Operational guidelines

Access to VCT is part of a comprehensive workplace response to HIV. The VCT@WORK initiative seeks to address the needs of large and small businesses, as well as workers in the informal economy. These operational guidelines provide guidance on respecting human rights in the implementation of the VCT@WORK initiative, with a particular focus on the following.

  • consent
  • confidentiality
  • counselling
  • connection to care
  • gender equality and women’s empowerment
  • meaningful engagement of people living with HIV
  • inclusion of key populations

In all workplace settings, staff HIV awareness is crucial to reducing HIV stigmatization and discrimination. Information should be made available to ensure that all workers know where they can go to seek voluntary and confidential HIV testing, and how to access HIV prevention, treatment, and care and support services.

A workplace policy with clearly defined principles to protect the rights of workers and to ensure non-discrimination and gender equality, as described in ILO Recommendation No. 200, is essential for the implementation and success of the VCT@WORK initiative. Of equal importance is the need for a truly representative HIV workplace committee, which should serve as a mechanism for the development and review of the workplace policy and programmes – including the VCT@WORK initiative.

The principle of Greater Involvement of People Living with HIV (GIPA) is central to the implementation of the VCT@WORK initiative. A growing body of evidence shows that programmes implementing GIPA achieve better, and more sustainable, results. Globally, organizations such as the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria continue to invest in the involvement of people living with HIV at all levels. At the local level, GIPA facilitates the creation of an environment that enables people living with HIV to fulfil their potential as employees, leaders and active members of society; it reduces stigma and contributes to the elimination of judgmental attitudes and discrimination. The guidelines further reinforce the need to:

a. build strong partnerships between workplaces involved in the initiative and employers’ and workers’ organizations, PLHIV networks and national governments, and, in particular, national AIDS commissions and VCT service providers;

b. provide adequate infrastructure and facilities for VCT to be conducted with respect for confidentiality and privacy, and aligned principles; and

c. establish good referral links with other service providers, to ensure that the needs of all PLHIV (women, men and transgender people) working with an organization are met.

The operational guidelines were developed following data collection from three country-level consultations with networks of PLHIV in India, Nigeria and South Africa – the three countries in the world with the highest numbers of people living with HIV. The inclusion of policy makers and decision makers from the business community in country-level discussions allowed them to express their concerns with regard to the implementation of HIV testing in and through the workplace.

 

 

Global Action with Local Impact: Why Advocacy Matters 2011-2014

This report examines the role of global-level advocacy in addressing HIV among key populations, including people living with HIV (PLHIV), people who inject drugs, sex workers, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people. Entitled “Global Action with Local Impact: Why Advocacy Matters,” the report details strategies used and outcomes achieved by five constituency-led global network organizations focused on key populations, providing numerous case study examples illustrating the concrete impact of advocacy at the global level.

The report focuses on global-level work conducted as part of the Bridging the Gaps program, an international multi-agency effort devoted to achieving universal access to HIV services and ensuring full human rights for key populations. Supported by the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the program is a collaboration between five Dutch-based organizations, five global key population networks, and 80 grassroots organizations across 16 countries.

The report includes principles of practice for global advocacy and a detailed theory of change depicting causal chains that lead to improvements in health and human rights for key populations. Numerous examples of global advocacy are included with a focus on concrete results of global advocacy initiatives. All work featured in the report was conducted by Bridging the Gaps global partners: the Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+), the International Network of People Who Use Drugs (INPUD), the Global Network of Sex Work Projects (NSWP), the MSMGF, and the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC).

More information on each of the other global key population networks featured in the report can be found on their respective websites: INPUD (www.inpud.net);  NSWP (www.nswp.org); the MSMGF (www.msmgf.org); and ITPC (www.itpcglobal.org). 

Difficult Decisions: A Tool for Care Workers Managing Ethical Dilemmas

When it comes to HIV care and support, making better decisions matters to all of us.

Ethical decision-making:

  • It matters to all people with HIV, including key populations and their children; and
  • It matters to care workers who want to make the best possible decision.

If you want to make the best possible decision—or wish that the organization that supports you would improve its decision-making—now there’s a simple tool that can help, available in English, French, Spanish and Russian.

 

Community Guide to the WHO Guidelines

GNP+ is  proud to present Driving the HIV response: A community guide to the WHO 2013 Consolidated Guidelines on the Use of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating and Preventing HIV Infection.

Community guide copy

The Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+), the International HIV/AIDS Alliance and STOP AIDS NOW! developed this Community Guide in response to the World Health Organization (WHO) 2013 Consolidated guidelines on the use of antiretroviral drugs for treating and preventing HIV. It aims to assist community leaders and civil society organisations to:

  • better understand the new WHO recommendations and guide country-level discussions on priorities (within civil society and between civil society and government)
  • ensure the meaningful participation of communities most affected by HIV in national decision-making and planning
  • advocate for any changes or further research necessary to adapt recommendations to suit their country context
  • mobilise and prepare communities for the implementation of new recommendations.

The guide is designed to be updated regularly, and extra modules will be added as further guidelines are issued by WHO, such as those on key populations and adolescents.

 

You can download the modules here.

Download here:

“Whoever designed the guide deserves a round of applause because it is really great and we will be putting it to use right away. The question is how can we use this simplification as a model for getting information such as this to the commmunity.”

Dr Rose Wafula, PMTCT co-ordinator at NASCOP (National AIDS and STI Control Program) Kenya

Community Guide Module G: Policies

This set of modules is designed to be used by communities to support the use of the new resource, Driving the HIV response: A community guide to the WHO 2013 Consolidated Guidelines on the Use of Antiretroviral Drugs for Treating and Preventing HIV Infection.

The downloadable modules cover different topics, and include:

The Global Network of People Living with HIV (GNP+), the International HIV/AIDS Alliance and STOP AIDS NOW! developed the Community Guide in response to the World Health Organization (WHO) 2013 Consolidated guidelines on the use of antiretroviral drugs for treating and preventing HIV. It aims to assist community leaders and civil society organisations to:

  • better understand the new WHO recommendations and guide country-level discussions on priorities (within civil society and between civil society and government)
  • ensure the meaningful participation of communities most affected by HIV in national decision-making and planning
  • advocate for any changes or further research necessary to adapt recommendations to suit their country context
  • mobilise and prepare communities for the implementation of new recommendations.