Strengthening TB and HIV & AIDS Responses - Eastern Region: Our Impact

{Photo Credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH}Photo Credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH

How US Foreign Assistance is Making A Difference Uganda has made great progress in controlling the HIV epidemic and increasing access to critical HIV and health services in recent years. Under the Government of Uganda’s leadership and with the support of development partners, such as MSH, Uganda has reached the second of UNAIDS global 90-90-90 goals: 90% of people living with HIV who know their status are on treatment. 

 {Photo credit: MSH staff}Kasifa Mugala, 34, started feeling ill while she was pregnant, and started ART after referral for prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV. “I am very happy. I gave birth to a healthy baby who is now turning one year old,” she said. “I did not know that I would ever be fine. I am grateful to our village health team.”Photo credit: MSH staff

Esther Nyende, 45, is a member of her village health team and a community leader in Uganda’s eastern Pallisa District. Nyende alone has referred 20 clients who are now receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART).

 {Photo credit: MSH staff}Mariam Nangobi receives treatment for multidrug-resistant TB (MDR TB) at an MSH-supported health facility in eastern Uganda.Photo credit: MSH staff

Mariam Nangobi was first diagnosed with tuberculosis (TB) in 2010 when she was 12 years old. After completing a full, eight-month course of treatment, she still tested positive for the disease. She was referred to a larger health facility where she stayed for two months, receiving daily injections. Again, after treatment, she continued to test positive for TB and missed a year of school. Health workers eventually diagnosed her with multidrug-resistant TB (MDR TB) -- a strain of TB that cannot be treated with the two most powerful first-line medicines.

{Photo credit: MSH staff}Photo credit: MSH staff

The average Ugandan woman gives birth to 6.2 children—a national fertility rate that is among the five highest in sub-Saharan Africa—increasing the chances of complicated pregnancies and deliveries. If all unmet need for modern contraceptive methods in Uganda were satisfied, it is estimated that maternal mortality would drop by 40 percent, and unplanned births and induced abortions would decline by about 85 percent. 

 {Photo credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH.}Rose Chebet (right) with her twins, her husband, and the linkage facilitator Helen Chelengat (middle).Photo credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH.

When Rose Chebet was five months pregnant with twins, she visited Kapchorwa Hospital in Eastern Uganda for a routine antenatal visit. She was devastated to learn that she was HIV positive and she feared her twins would not survive. Health workers referred Chebet, a first-time mother, to an antiretroviral therapy (ART) clinic where she began taking medication.

 {Photo credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH}In six months, 485 girls in six schools in Mbale District received HIV & AIDS education.Photo credit: Tadeo Atuhura/MSH

When Sylvia Kabuya entered Mbale Progressive Secondary School in eastern Uganda, she knew little about HIV & AIDS, how it was transmitted, or where to get tested. The 16-year-old’s knowledge about the disease was based on conjecture passed among her peers. Less than 40 percent of Ugandan women aged 15 to 24 have comprehensive knowledge about HIV & AIDS, according to the 2013 Uganda Demographic Health Survey.

Chronic diseases account for about 28 percent of deaths in sub-Saharan Africa, and by 2030 they will kill nearly twice as many people in the region as they do today. In Uganda, screening for cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and other illnesses remains limited despite the availability of inexpensive and effective diagnostic techniques.

 {Photo credit: STAR-E staff/MSH}Lydia attends to a patient at Busia Health Center.Photo credit: STAR-E staff/MSH

Ms. Lydia Nakalyango is the only midwife on staff during the day at the Maternal and Child Health Department of Busia Health Center IV, which serves not just their own municipality, but clients from neighboring Kenya as well. Lydia takes care of antenatal clients while also paying attention to the labor ward for any mothers delivering. She is also on standby to care for new babies referred for early infant diagnosis.

{Photo credit: Glenn Ruga/MSH, Uganda.}Photo credit: Glenn Ruga/MSH, Uganda.

After much anticipation, the USAID-funded Strengthening TB and AIDS Response – Eastern Region (STAR-E) project, led by Management Sciences for Health (MSH), has begun supporting the roll out of the Option B+ treatment program in Uganda.

The Management Sciences for Health (MSH) global team of over 2,300 people from more than 70 nations is commemorating World AIDS Day 2012 in over 30 country offices around the world, including Nigeria, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), Afghanistan, Ethiopia, South Africa, Uganda, Haiti, and the United States.On World AIDS Day, MSH Nigeria, in collaboration with the Discovery Channel Global Education Partnership, Chevron, and Access Bank Plc, will be hosting a launch of the award-winning film titled “INSIDE STORY: The Science of HIV/AIDS” in Lagos, Nigeria.

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