Dr. Nkonwa says that some PLWH have also been advised to form groups where they can send one person to the health center to pick ARVs for all members to minimize transport costs. He notes that the model aims at bridging the gap between health centers and People living with HIV/AIDS in distant villages.
Luweero district has embraced the “Differentiated
Service Delivery model-DSMD” with the aim of identifying and reaching out to
People Living with HIV/AIDS in villages. Under the
“Differentiated Service Delivery model” health
workers move from health centers to communities where they identify individuals
in need for HIV/AIDs services.
The model is aimed at identifying, preventing, diagnosing,
treating and supporting people in need of HIV and/TB services in the villages. Dr. Innocent Nkonwa, the Luweero District
Health Officer explains that the health workers through linkage facilitators,
peer mothers and other volunteers will identify People Living with HIV/AIDs in
communities to provide them the needed services.
Dr. Nkonwa says that some PLWH have
also been advised to form groups where they can send one person to the health
center to pick ARVs for all members to minimize transport costs. He notes
that the model aims at bridging the gap between health centers and People
living with HIV/AIDS in distant villages.
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The model is being implemented by Luweero Hospital, St Mary
Kasaala, Zirobwe and Namaliga Health Center. It is expected to roll out to all
health centers in the district by close of the year.
The Health Ministry approved the model in 2017 and issued
guidelines on its implementation. People Living with HIV/AIDS and
activists have welcomed the model, saying it will enhance enrollment, retention
and adherence to Anti-Retroviral Therapy services.
Volunteers under the Dreams project supported by Men of
Destiny Public Health Consults, say many people are likely to test and enroll
for ART services as result of the intervention. Grace Namawejje and Doreen
Namatovu, both volunteers under the Dreams Project in Luweero, say the program
will see many people enroll on ART services.
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Some of the People
Living with HIV/AIDs, who spoke to URN on condition of anonymity for fear of
stigmatization, said some of their colleagues had dropped out of ART services because
of the long distances to health facilities.
Others complained that health centers lack
privacy and health workers have little time to counsel them. The PLWH
say the model is timely and have promised to embrace it. Luweero district has registered
upsurge in the number of HIV infections.
According to the 2018 survey conducted
by Luweero District Health Department and Makerere University School of Public
health, Luweero town registered the highest HIV/AIDS Prevalence rate standing
at 25.2 % whereas Kikyusa town council come second with 19.8%.
Kamira Sub County stood at 18.8 %, Wobulenzi town 18.4% and Kanyanda trading center 8.6%. On Average the district HIV/AIDs prevalence rate stand at
7.2% above the National average at 6%.
There are 35,021 Persons Living with HIV but only 18,234
people know their status and 18,231are on ART services in the district. The
district believes the strategy may help to stop HIV/AIDS infections and enroll
many patients on ART services.