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Increasing the Numbers of Children Accessing HIV Testing and Counseling at Soroti Regional Referral Hospital in Uganda Poster
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Uganda is home to an estimated 176,948 children infected with HIV and only 25% of them were initiated on antiretroviral therapy (ART) by September 2013 compared to 69% of eligible adults (HIV and AIDS Country Progress Report, 2013).
Despite efforts to encourage and provide HIV testing and counseling (HTC) services for children (2-15 year), little progress has been documented—only 696,140 (8.5%) out of 8,208,188 individuals who received HTC services between October 2012 and September 2013 were children. Data shows that there are gaps in Uganda in reaching children aged 2-15 years with HTC underscoring the country’s performance towards meeting UNAIDS goal (identifying 90% of individuals living with HIV, linking 90% to care and ensuring that 90% achieve viral load suppression).
After the intervention, Results showed that improving service provider skills, establishing specialized service delivery points for children, streamlining client flow and raising awareness and mobilization increased access to and utilization of HTC for children below 15 years of age. These changes increased numbers of children accessing HTC from 4% to 19%, and those identified as HIV-positive were enrolled into care.