Facilitation of expert clients to follow up on ARV adherence during COVID

Facilitation of expert clients to follow up on ARV adherence during COVID

Being the eldest and a bread winner of a family of eight, 26-year-old Prossy from Uganda used to operate a small stall in the market. Due to the COVID19 crisis the market has since then been closed leaving her and the entire family helpless.

“I fear loss of my life”

“We can no longer afford to have regular meals. Whenever there is no food I cannot take my ARVs as these are very strong and cannot be taken on an empty stomach”, Prossy says. “In addition, I am forced to disclose my HIV status to the Resident District Commissioner in order to get permission for  transport to go and collect my medication during COVID restrictions.”

Treatment has also been compromised as the health facilities no longer offer counseling services because of social distancing. Prossy: “I fear that my poor adherence would eventually lead to drug resistance hence loss of my life.”

Portrait of Prossy

250 households directly supported

The ban on movement due to COVID-19 took the whole country by surprise. Attention is being put on COVID-19 leaving out other essential services such as HIV service delivery. This greatly affects women and children by missing their ARV refills. With support from the Aidsfonds COVID Response Fund, the National Forum of People living with HIV in Uganda (NAFOPHANU) managed to facilitate 105 expert clients to follow up on ARV refills. They carry out home visits and follow up clients with phone calls to treatment adherence, with district health teams and health facilities to establish the adherence status with government and to ensure ample stock of ARVs.

NAFOPHANU expects to directly support 250 households of women and children living with HIV will be reached in each of the six districts these 105 expert clients operate.

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