Grant is closed

Nov 2015 – Oct 2017

Reducing mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Zimbabwe (Phase 2)

Zimbabwe

Country

Zimbabwe – Africa

To officially eliminate mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Zimbabwe.

$3,847,329 Multi-Year Grant Value

Insights: Photo: Zimbabwe 4

This is an extension of a $45 million grant to the Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric AIDS Foundation which ran from 2010 to 2015. Click here to learn more about that initial phase of work and its impact.Success for this project means an effective national programme for the prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Zimbabwe that will be sustained without further CIFF funding. This depends on supportive national policies backed up with clear and well-budgeted national plans. It depends on systems and structures in place at provincial and district level which support high-quality services at health facility level. CIFF is co-funding the government position of National Coordinator for PMTCT and Paediatric Treatment. She is working to strengthen policies, and ensuring that plans and budgets are in place. The Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric AIDS Foundation is providing technical assistance at national and district levels, making sure that systems and capacities are in place to sustain the programme beyond CIFF’s support. District Focal Persons are working in 26 districts to provide quality improvement support to the district health teams and health facilities, creating health facilities with the right complement of staff knowledge and skills, with all the equipment and support they need. By reducing HIV transmission and improving children’s treatment, the programme aims to avert over 9,000 cases of HIV in babies, and 360 deaths due to AIDS in infants aged 0-4.  

Once the project has ended, the Ministry of Health will implement the programmes, funded by the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and its own funding from the national AIDS levy.

Impact

One year into the programme, it has already achieved a number of valuable outcomes. All pregnant women now undergo testing, receive their HIV status and start their HIV treatment during the ante-natal care process. 83% of women remain on HIV treatment at the 18 month point, exceeding the team’s target of 80%. All HIV-exposed infants are tested using the specialist DNA PCR test before the age of two months. It is more challenging to get HIV-exposed infants to have their final, confirmatory HIV test before the age of two years. Nonetheless, the team has met their target of 40%. Challenges remain, for example, in the form of ongoing stigma and discrimination, which the team continues to address through work with community leade

At a national level, and with support from the programme, the government has rolled out the WHO 2015 ‘Test and Treat’ guidelines, and launched the ‘Start Free, AIDS Free, Stay Free’ framework in Zimbabwe. They have also started the process for ‘pre-elimination’ status for elimination of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV and syphilis.