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School and Program Updates

School and Program Updates

Columbia: ICAP Recognizes 30 Years of Gains Against HIV and Looks Forward to a Healthier Future for Central Asia

The introduction of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) services in Kyrgyz Republic 30 years ago ushered in new care and treatment options for people living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). To take stock of progress and continue addressing gaps in HIV response, ICAP organized a Central Asia regional conference – bringing together ICAP’s teams from Kyrgyz Republic, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan – to commemorate the 30th Anniversary of the introduction of these critical, lifesaving services.

The conference “Achieving HIV epidemic control in Central Asia: lessons learned and ways forward” was supported by the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) through the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Kyrgyz Republic Ministry of Health, and convened more than 230 participants.

Since 2010, acquired immun deficiency syndrome (AIDS)-related deaths in the Kyrgyz Republic have decreased by 9 percent, yet new infections have increased by 21 percent. To address this, ICAP has been providing technical assistance and implementation support to the Ministry of Health of the Kyrgyz Republic, and working with regional health facilities to pilot integrated HIV, tuberculosis, and medication-assisted therapy services with a focus on people who inject drugs — as well as piloting innovative strategies for outreach and nurse-supported adherence and counseling at the community level.

Conference representatives engaged in discussions covering a wide range of topics, including HIV control in the region, the impact of donor assistance on services, the rollout of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) in the Central Asia region, and more.

The ICAP team from Kazakhstan received a letter of appreciation signed by the Minister of Health of the Republic of Kazakhstan on the final day of the conference, acknowledging ICAP’s significant contribution to HIV epidemic control in the country.

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