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Towards universal access: scaling up priority HIV / AIDS interventions in the health sector. Progress report, April 2007.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 2007 Apr. 88 p.Drawing on lessons from the scale-up of HIV interventions over the last few years, WHO, as the UNAIDS cosponsor responsible for the health sector response to HIV/AIDS, has established priorities for its technical work and support to countries on the basis of the following five Strategic Directions, each of which represents a critical area where the health sector must invest if significant progress is to be made towards achieving universal access. Enabling people to know their HIV status; Maximizing the health sector's contribution to HIV prevention; Accelerating the scale-up of HIV/AIDS treatment and care; Strengthening and expanding health systems; Investing in strategic information to guide a more effective response. In this context, WHO undertook at the World Health Assembly in May 2006 to monitor and evaluate the global health sector response in scaling up towards universal access and to produce annual reports. This first report addresses progress in scaling up the following health sector interventions. Antiretroviral therapy; Prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT); HIV testing and counseling; Interventions for injecting drug users (IDUs); Control of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) to prevent HIV transmission; Surveillance of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. (excerpt)
Integrating sexual health interventions into reproductive health services: programme experience from developing countries.
Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization [WHO], 2005.  p. (Sexual Health Document Series)In 1994, at the International Conference on Population and Development (ICPD, 1994), 184 countries reached a landmark consensus on the need for a broad, integrated approach to sexual and reproductive health. Since that time, countries have been struggling to put the concept into practice. The first challenge has been to understand the broad concept of sexual and reproductive health, in order to identify the service interventions that should be added to an existing reproductive health (RH) or maternal and child health (MCH) programme to make it a sexual and reproductive health (SRH) programme. The second, more difficult, challenge has been to develop feasible, acceptable and cost effective strategies for providing these services within the existing, poorly resourced, primary health care programme base. To create SRH programmes, reproductive health services have to be expanded to better address sexual health. SRH programmes need to give attention to broader determinants of healthy sexuality and well-being. A recent WHO publication, Conceptual framework for programming in sexual health, offers a sexual health approach to service design and implementation. It stresses the need to recognize that not all sexual activity is for reproduction, and that other motivational factors, such as pleasure or a sense of obligation, are often more important determinants of individual sexual health and well being. To improve sexual health, programmes must address sexuality throughout the lifespan, from adolescence to old age, for both men and women. They must also recognize the role of power in sexual relationships and how it affects people's ability to make decisions about their own bodies and sexual life, free from violence, discrimination and stigma. Individual decision-making and the ability to make informed choices can also be limited by social, cultural and legal barriers. Broad sexual and reproductive health care services must recognize and begin to address these constraints through targeted interventions. (excerpt)
[New Delhi], India, NACO, 2004.  p.Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) is the process by which an individual undergoes confidential counseling to learn about his/her HIV status and to exercise informed choices in testing for HIV followed by further appropriate action. A key underlying principle of the VCT intervention is the voluntary participation. HIV counseling and testing are initiated by the client's free will. Counseling in VCT consists of pre-test and post-test counseling. During pre-test counseling, the counselor provides to the individual / couple an opportunity to explore and analyze their situation, and consider being tested for HIV. It facilitates more informed decisions about HIV testing. After the individual / couple has received accurate and complete information they reach an understanding about all that is involved. In the event that, after counseling, the individual decides to take the HIV test, VCT enables confidential HIV testing. Counseling is client-centered. This promotes trust between the counselor and the client. The client is helped to identify and understand the implications of a negative or a positive result. They are helped to think through the practical strategies for coping with the results of the HIV test. Post-test counseling further reinforces the understanding of all implications of a test result. Counseling also helps clients to decide who they should share the HIV test result with, and how to approach that aspect. (excerpt)