Health in all policies: A multidisciplinary approach to increase the pediatric HIV/AIDS treatment rates in Tanzania
Tanzania has the second largest burden of children yet to be started on treatment when applying the 2010 World Health Organization (WHO) eligibility criteria1. In partnership with the Preseident’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the Global Fund, Tanzania has 34,524 children on antiretroviral treatment at the end of FY2013, representing 26.5% coverage based on a UNAIDS estimate of 130,000 children and adolescents in need of treatment. Therefore, pediatric antiretroviral treatment coverage in Tanzania lags behind the global coverage estimate of 34%. Additionally, there exists a wide disparity in Anti-retroviral Treatment (ART) coverage between adults and children with an adult ART coverage estimate in Tanzania of 68%.
In order to increase the pediatric ART coverage, PEPFAR and the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF) jointly announced the Accelerating Children’s HIV/AIDS Treatment (ACT) Initiative which aims to double the number of children on HIV treatment across 10 priority countries, of which Tanzania is one. The Tanzania ACT initiative aims to double the number of children receiving ART using a multidisciplinary approach. The ACT approach targets multiple sectors - health, education, social welfare, gender, media, infrastructure, and finance. By including health – specifically pediatric HIV/AIDS – in a multi-sectorial approach, the initiative aims to double the treatment rates among Tanzanian children. Some of the approaches include lowering the age of consent for HIV testing and counseling, integrating HIV education in to education curricula, engaging community health workers for outreach and home-based care and treatment services, strengthening referral systems across sectors, and improving the supply chain systems to ensure adequate and timely supply of ART.
The presentation will present a multi-disciplinary approach targeting health across policies and sectors. Audience will discuss the pros and cons of using an approach that targets health across sectors and policies.
Learning Areas:Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Protection of the public in relation to communicable diseases including prevention or control
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related laws, regulations, standards, or guidelines
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Describe the current status of pediatric HIV/AIDS treatment coverage in Tanzania. Describe the strategy of the Accelerating Childhood Treatment (ACT) initiative for pediatric HIV/AIDS treatment coverage. Explain the strategies adopted by Tanzania to double the pediatric HIV/ AIDS treatment coverage.
Keyword(s): HIV/AIDS, Health Care Access
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am a public health physician with 15 years of experience in the fields of developing and strengthening health services delivery programs and systems. I currently serve as a Senior Heath Advisor for the CDC based in Tanzania and I manage activities under the ACT initiative mentioned in the abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No
I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.