South Africa Partners has received a $17.5 million grant over five years from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The grant, of $3.5 million each year from 2015 through 2019, will fund technical assistance and support for the development and implementation of key aspects of HIV/AIDS care and support services in South Africa. Through this new program, known as LinkCARE, South Africa Partners will work with the Department of Health and other departments at the national and provincial levels to strengthen systems that enable people with chronic diseases to be linked to care, retained in care and supported in adhering to treatment. LinkCARE will support the implementation of the National Adherence Guidelines for Chronic Diseases (tuberculosis, HIV and non-communicable diseases) and the national monitoring and evaluation system.
LinkCARE builds on South Africa Partners’ work with the Integrated Access to Care and Treatment (I ACT) program, initially developed in partnership with people living with HIV and the Eastern Cape Department of Health and now operating in all nine of South Africa’s provinces. I ACT has been adopted as a national care and support strategy, with South Africa Partners serving as technical advisor. I ACT empowers people living with HIV to confidently lead healthy lives. Services include facilitated group meetings that provide advice on self-care and acceptance, as well as broader information about HIV and sexual health. The I ACT curriculum has been adapted by Wits Reproductive Health Institute to support adolescents, and a “Kidz” I ACT pediatric curriculum has been developed by ZoeLife.
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