Pediatric HIV/AIDS care and treatment has historically been a weak area in HIV/AIDS services. SUSTAIN is working in close coordination with the Uganda Ministry of Health (MOH) to improve systems for pediatric HIV care and treatment, following the widely-used 10-point management plan for pediatric HIV. The plan includes:
- Early diagnosis of HIV infection
- Growth and development monitoring
- Nutritional supplements and education
- Psychosocial support
- Aggressive treatment of acute infections
- Prevention and treatment of opportunistic infections
- Adolescent care, treatment and support
- Family-focused care and treatment
- Antiretroviral therapy (ART) for all eligible children, including all infants under 2 years of age
SUSTAIN works with MOH and health facility staff to develop targeted interventions that increase enrollment into care and improve the quality of pediatric HIV services.
- Ten percent of ART clients at SUSTAIN-supported hospitals are pediatric clients, achieving the MOH target of 10-15%.
- The percent of HIV-infected children below 2 years of age (identified at hospital HIV-exposed infant clinics) who were started on ART has significantly improved during the first two years of the project, from 25% in year one to 89% in year two.
- Thirty health service providers from all SUSTAIN-supported hospitals participated in trainings on skills for counseling and providing psychological support to children and adolescents affected by HIV/AIDS.