AHF UKRAINE: ACCESS TO TREATMENT FOR HIV-INFECTED DRUG USERS IS AN IMPORTANT STEP TO OVERCOME THE EPIDEMICS OF HIV AND TUBERCULOSIS IN KYIV
The first integrated care center in Kyiv opened on the World AIDS Day where HIV-positive patients who use drugs can receive services related to chemical dependency, HIV and tuberculosis. Right now, only one third of HIV-positive drug users in Kyiv have access to lifesaving services, including antiretroviral therapy, which is a key condition to overcome the epidemics of HIV and tuberculosis.
Creation of the integrated care center is a project that is implemented by the Representative Office of American AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) in Ukraine based in the Kyiv City Narcological Hospital "Sotsioterapiya" and in partnership with Kyiv City Clinical Hospital No. 5, ICF "Alliance of Public Health" and with support from the Kyiv State City Administration.
Zoya Shabarova, Europe Bureau Chief of AHF, said: "Establishing of such a center in Kyiv was made possible due to joint efforts of organizations from the governmental and non-governmental sectors. This is an example of effective partnership to help HIV-positive patients and an essential condition for the progress in achieving objectives of the AHF strategy 20 by 20 which stands for 20 million people receiving HIV treatment all over the world by 2020). This model of integrated care should become the gold standard for all the points of substitution therapy all over the country.
All the conditions needed for comprehensive HIV and TB care are created at the integrated site. A person can receive full continuum of services starting from HIV rapid test through support in HIV treatment initiation, successful retention in care with assistance of substitution therapy and TB prevention or care.
"Opening of this center will help HIV-positive patients to receive simultaneous treatment in one place. Previously, these people had to visit different hospitals to obtain three different medications and services. Not surprisingly, more than 70% of patients missed treatment or did not come back to receive care. Owing to this project, access to continuum of care for HIV-positive patients who use drugs will be assured," saidVolodymyr Yaryi, chief physician of KCNCH "Sotsioterapiya."
"Kyiv took another important step to overcome the epidemics of HIV and tuberculosis by joining Fast-Track Cities initiative. The purpose of this initiative is to finally defeat AIDS by 2030 through actions and commitment of large cities, where almost 70% of all HIV-positive people reside," saidMykola Yuriyovych Povoroznyk, deputy head of Kyiv City State Administration.
Sergei Filippovich, treatment director, the Alliance of Public Health, said"Since 2005, the Alliance has been supporting substitution therapy (ST) sites across the country as a part of the Global Fund programs. Now more than 9000 clients have access to ST in 173 sites. We support partnership initiatives of the Kyiv City Clinical Hospital No. 5, Kyiv City Narcological Hospital 'Sotsioterapiya,' AIDS Healthcare Foundation in Ukraine, to provide integrated services in Kiev."
Today in Kyiv, 939 people are receiving substitution therapy, 368 of them are HIV positive and need ARV drugs.
Opening the integrated care center is a project that is implemented by the Representative Office of AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF) in Ukraine based in the Kyiv City Narcological Hospital "Sotsioterapiya" and in partnership with Kyiv City Clinical Hospital No. 5, ICF "Alliance of Public Health" and with support from the Kyiv State City Administration,
AIDS Healthcare Foundation was established in 1987 in Los Angeles, as a small community association, whose members were trying to alleviate the suffering of people who were doomed to die of AIDS. At present, as part of comprehensive health programs, AHF in partnership with other organizations provides care, treatment and services to almost 600,000 patients living with HIV in 36 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin and North America.
KCNCH "Sotsioterapiya" is the unique national system of treatment and rehabilitation for patients who have problems with alcohol and drug abuse and members of their families. KCNCH "Sotsioterapiya" is a narcological service that serves for the entire Kyiv (about 6,000 hospital patients, 1,500 ambulatory patients and narcological monitoring of 27,000 narcological patients).
Kyiv City Center for Prevention and Control of AIDS (KCCH No. 5 was established in 1999 to provide specialized medical care to HIV-positive persons and AIDS patients residing in Kyiv. It is located at the clinical hospital No. 5, 11, Vidpochynku St. The AIDS center includes an outpatient department, an inpatient department and an intensive care unit.
"Alliance of Public Health" is aninternational Charity Foundation which in cooperation with government partners and NGOs in all regions of Ukraine have spent more than 10 years implementing comprehensive programs of prevention and treatment of HIV, TB and HCV, which cover more than 250,000 people. Since 2005, direct support for Alliance number of SMT patients in Ukraine increased by 130 times (from 70 to 9,073 patients).
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