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#30, November, 2016

In this issue:

RESPOND at the 3rd National AIDS Conference “For Every Life Together”
3rd Round of Regional Quality Improvement Learning Sessions
HIV Service Quality Improvement in Continuous Medical Education
Clinical Trainings for HIV Health Service Providers
5th Civil Society Capacity Development Forum
Social Entrepreneurship

RESPOND at the 3rd National AIDS Conference “For Every Life Together”

At the 3rd National AIDS Conference RESPOND presented Quality Improvement (QI) model and the results of testing the changes to fill the gaps in HIV service continuum. Recommendations on the QI model integration in services provided by the state-run healthcare facilities and NGOs were included in the conference resolution.

During break-out sessions, RESPOND presented the results of implementing a number of interventions. “Partner’s Health” is an intervention aimed at enrollment of PLHIV sexual partners in HIV counselling and testing services. It showed a substantial level of yield (11% among sexual partners of PLHIV and 7% among sexual partners of PWID). Another intervention «Test and Link” uses social networks to enroll MSM in HIV counseling and testing services. The “Test and Link” model demonstrated the average HIV detection rate in Kyiv and Odesa to be 5%. “Steps Towards Health” is an intervention that within 1.5 years enabled 390 PWID to strengthen their adherence to services within the healthcare system. Presentation of “Patient School” intervention integrated with “Studio of Opportunities” generated a lot of interest among the conference participants. The integrated model has the goal to provide clients with economic strengthening opportunities to strengthen ART adherence. 197 women completed the intervention. The clients demonstrated stronger motivation to make positive changes in their lives and improve their health.

During the conference, RESPOND shared the experience of developing and implementing the electronic instruments designed to analyze and visualize QI indicators at the level of ART sites as well as the instruments to monitor the progress of QI activities on the regional level.
RESPOND presentedfindings from the survey of MSM and ART providers on their preparedness to PrEP (Pre-exposure prophylaxis). The research was conducted in partnership with Yale University.

The following RESPOND’s abstracts submitted to the conference have been published in the Preventive Medicine Journal of the L.V. Gromashevsky Institute of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases:
  • Bugaienko, N.S., Antonenko, Zh.V., Yurchenko, O.V., Nikolko, M.V.
    Results of Improving Linkage of PLHIV to Medical Care in Kyiv City.
  • Mironyuk, I.S., Mulesa, O.Yu. Contingency Planning to Ensure Effective Performance of ART Sites.
  • Mironyuk, I.S., Mulesa, O.Yu., Nikolko, M.V.
    The Assessment Tool for Assessmetn of Personnel of ART Sites as a Means of Planning the Reach Extension for Key Populations.
  • Chihalova, I.V., Gudova, V.G., Lopatenko G.A., Marchenko N.Ye., Nikolko M.V., Kalyagina N.G.
    FAST TRACK Strategy Measurement at the ART-Site Level in Dnipropetrovsk Region: Lessons Learned.
Pictures from the Conference can be accessed by this link.

3rd Round of Regional Quality Improvement Learning Sessions

On November 15-18, 2016, Regional Quality Improvement (QI) meeting in Dnipro launched the 3rd round of QI Learning sessions. QI coaches from 37 ART sites presented successful changes they tested during 9 months that included: HIV testing with two rapid tests or ELISA by specialty and/or PHC providers, implementation of a patient tracking system (introduction of patient referral slips), registering the HIV-positive in-patients with AIDS service before they are discharged from the hospital, transferring patients from AIDS centers to local ART sites, signing informed consent to receive psycho-social support services prior to testing.

The implemented changes led to the following results:
• 2% increase in detection rate (9 months of 2015 – 4.7%, 9 months of 2016 – 6.8%);
• Despite the absence of confirmatory tests, high rates of registration with AIDS service were maintained (1,496 people registered in 9 months of 2016 compared to 1,502 in 9 months of 2015);
• 64% increase in number of patients initiated on ART (1,686 patients in 9 months of 2015 and 2,767 in 9 months of 2016.

During the next quarter, local QI teams in Dnipropetrovsk region will scale up implementation of successful changes and will start implementation of new ones targeted at quality assurance of HIV rapid testing and ART adherence

By mid-January 2017, such Learning Sessions will have taken place in all 8 regions which participate in RESPOND-led QI Collaborative.

HIV Service Quality Improvement in Continuous Medical Education

From November 28 to December 2, 2016, RESPOND held a pilot post-graduate training course on QI methodology. 20 chief and deputy chief doctors of rayon and city hospitals from eight project partner regions participated in the training.

The overall goal of the training course is to introduce participants to the foundations of quality management at the level of healthcare facility and to train hospital administrators in the implementation of quality improvement methodology.

This post-graduate training curriculum developed by RESPOND experts in collaboration with the Department of Healthcare Management of Bogomolets National Medical University contains case studies of Quality Improvement initiatives that are being implemented in RESPOND partner regions. Following the pilot training, the training curriculum will be further refined and formally adopted as part of the Bogomolets National Medical University training program.

Please follow this link to find more pictures of the event.

Clinical Trainings for HIV Health Service Providers

STUDIO OF OPPORTUNITIES: A NEW BEGINNING FOR A UKRAINIAN WOMAN LIVING WITH HIVIn September-November 2016, RESPOND conducted four more trainings on HIV counseling and testing using rapid tests for 103 healthcare providers from Kyiv oblast and the city of Kyiv. In partnership with the Ukrainian National Training Center, RESPOND conducted two trainings on ART fundamentals for 37 physicians from Kyiv and Kirovograd regions. The trained medical personnel will add to the capacity of ART sites and healthcare facilities in their efforts to strengthen the HIV service cascade.

RESPOND used the HCT curriculum developed by the project and endorsed by P.L. Shupyk National Medical Academy of Postgraduate Education & Odesa National Medical University.

5th Civil Society Capacity Development Forum

STUDIO OF OPPORTUNITIES: A NEW BEGINNING FOR A UKRAINIAN WOMAN LIVING WITH HIVRESPOND participated in and co-sponsored the 5th Civil Society Development Forum which took place in Kyiv on November 29-30, 2016. The Forum brought together over 1,200 Ukrainian civil society professionals to promote best practices that ensure the development of adequate skills and organizational capacities to ultimately enable civil society to effectively move the reform process forward in Ukraine.

RESPOND supported participation of 33 partners from local organizations – current and former RESPOND grantees. In addition to providing an opportunity to attend various sessions and networking events in the two days of the Forum, RESPOND also hosted Capacity Development Community of Practice (COP) meeting for its partner NGOs. This meeting served as a venue for sharing four years’ experience of improving organizational performance through the implementation of Pact-introduced capacity development tools.

Wrapping the meeting up, RESPOND invited partner organizations to submit their Expression of Interest in receiving individually tailored technical support in the development of comprehensive sustainability strategies.

Pictures of RESPOND and its partners at the Civil Society CD Forum are available here.

Social Entrepreneurship

STUDIO OF OPPORTUNITIES: A NEW BEGINNING FOR A UKRAINIAN WOMAN LIVING WITH HIVIn fall 2015, RESPOND launched a pilot initiative to support HIV-service NGOs in the development of social enterprises as alternative revenue source. Since then, RESPOND has been furthering the development of social entrepreneurship in Ukraine through trainings, mentoring, an international exchange, and connection to investment opportunities. In November 2016, RESPOND presented the initiative at the 2nd All-Ukrainian Forum of Social Entrepreneurs.

At the 3rd National HIV/AIDS Conference “For Every Life Together” held on November 21-23, RESPOND presented Social Entrepreneurship as a tool to sustain HIV services within NGOs as alternative revenue generation.

Today, five HIV service NGOs supported by RESPOND have launched social. Creation of two more is underway. The NGOs participated in the Social Entrepreneurship Fair during the 5th National Civil Society Development Forum.

RESPOND continues giving mentor support to enable more organizations to diversify their funding and ensure sustainable services for PLHIV.

List of Social Enterprises Supported by RESPOND


  • Quality of Services
  • Network and Organizational Strengthening
  • Data for Decision Making
The USAID RESPOND Project funded under the U.S. President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief is aimed at reducing the HIV transmission among key populations in Ukraine. The project is implemented by Pact, Inc. in partnership with FHI 360.
This publication is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The contents do not necessarily reflect the views of USAID or the United States Government.
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