Accelerating HIV epidemic control in Angola

A sustainable model for comprehensive HIV services

“Sharing my story helps people cope with a positive diagnosis and get the treatment they deserve and need to fulfill their lives,” says Manuela de Santos, a patient assistant facilitator. Ten years after her own HIV diagnosis, she acts as a role model for sustained adherence and HIV management.
To prevent inadvertent disclosure and stigma, community counselors also visit the homes of neighbors to share information about malaria, TB, and basic sanitation practices as well as HIV. Equipped with airtime to call contacts and rapid HIV test kits, community counselors are very effective in identifying new cases.
“Malaria kills more people than HIV, but unfortunately, HIV patients lose hope. Instead of discriminating against them, we want to help them. We want to give them psychological support, medicines, and affection,” says Dr. Lombe Kilamba.

Through index case testing, the project expanded testing and treatment services to the family and close contacts of nearly 5,000 newly identified HIV-positive patients and tested an additional 6,514 people, of whom 1,631 were identified as HIV positive.

More than 17,000 Angolans are receiving HIV treatment across seven project-supported health facilities and 75 percent of patients on antiretroviral medication have achieved an undetectable viral load.

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