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Strategic partnerships to increase access to HIV prevention and diagnosis in 30 Amazonian indigenous communities of Bolivia
Issues: UNAIDS estimates that 6,800 people in Bolivia live with HIV or AIDS. Underreporting of 70% is feared and sexual intercourse is the main mode of transmission. The Department of Pando, in the Amazonian region of Bolivia, registers the highest prevalence of STIs. National HIV prevention and diagnosis programs do not target specifically indigenous populations, because they are not considered at risk. However, knowledge of the use of condom as an HIV prevention method is know by 54% of the non-indigenous population, versus only 34% of indigenous man and women.
Description: In 2006/07, the Central Indígena de Pueblos Originarios de la Amazonia de Pando (CIPOAP) and Family Care International (FCI)/Bolivia, in partnership with the Pando District Level Health Department (SEDES), implemented a project aimed at increasing indigenous communities’ access to HIV preventive information, diagnosis and counseling (and treatment if needed). Project activities included a KAP study, trainings on HIV, and advocacy to raise awareness among indigenous leaders of the importance of including HIV and sexual and reproductive health in their political agendas.
Lessons learned: CIPOAP, FCI and SEDES partnership lead to the creation of mobile health units that reach out to very isolated and underserved indigenous communities in order to:
– Distribute condoms and prevention materials
– Take voluntary quick HIV diagnosis tests among the local population
– Provide post testing counseling
– And progressively gather data on the real status of the HIV epidemic in these indigenous communities.
This presentation will show tangible results of innovative advocacy efforts to address HIV among indigenous peoples in Latin America.
Next steps: Upon request of indigenous organizations from the Peruvian and Brazilian Amazonia the project is seeking financial support to expand activities to the frontier regions.
AIDS 2008 – XVII International AIDS Conference
Abstract no. THPE0464
” P. Montalvo Strategic partnerships to increase access to HIV prevention and diagnosis in 30 Amazonian indigenous communities of Bolivia. : AIDS 2008 – XVII International AIDS Conference: Abstract no. THPE0464″