HIV/AIDS Professionals from Kazakhstan and Russia to Receive Training in Ukraine

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 11, 2005

Contact:

Olga Kostyuk
olga@aiha.kiev.ua

Andriy Styopkin
andriy@aiha.kiev.ua

HIV/AIDS Professionals from Kazakhstan and Russia to Receive Training in Ukraine

Kiev, Ukraine, April 11, 2005—The Regional Knowledge Hub for the Care and Treatment of HIV/AIDS in Eurasia is conducting a workshop that will give specialists from Kazakhstan and Russia the knowledge and hands-on clinical skills they need to provide antiretroviral therapy (ART) to adolescents and adults who are living with HIV/AIDS. Sponsored by the Kazakh National Center on Preventing and Fighting AIDS with funding from The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, and the American International Health Alliance (AIHA) with funding from the United States Agency for International Development’s Russian Mission, the week-long training event will be held in Kiev April 11–17 at the AIDS Unit, Infectious Diseases Hospital, Institute of Epidemiology and Infectious Diseases named after L.V. Gromashevskiy, located at 23 Yanvarskogo Vosstania Street.

In recent years, ART has been introduced into the clinical practice of the former Soviet countries as a treatment for HIV/AIDS. As a result, these countries are experiencing a significant lack of healthcare practitioners able to manage HIV disease with antiretroviral (ARV) drugs, as well as a lack of social workers and allied health professionals who play a critical role in ongoing care by helping patients adhere to treatment and offering psycho-social support. This course—and others developed and conducted by the Knowledge Hub—is designed to assist target countries in the region to build a competent workforce capable of administering ART and providing comprehensive care for people living with HIV/AIDS in accordance with WHO recommendations and national requirements.

Since its opening in 2004, the Knowledge Hub has conducted seven specialized workshops on ART for 100 Ukrainian physicians, nurses, social workers, and other professionals. This week’s course marks the first time the Knowledge Hub’s specialized training courses will be offered to practitioners from other countries. Fifteen clinicians from Kazakhstan and nine from Russia will become the first international participants of the training program, which will be taught by leading Ukrainian, German, and American HIV/AIDS experts who have extensive experience in both clinical practice and adult education techniques.

The topics to be addressed in this training course include: WHO and national guidelines on HIV/AIDS treatment; main components of HIV/AIDS care; laboratory services; ARV drugs; and the team approach to HIV/AIDS care and treatment. This program will allow doctors and nurses to master international and national standards of HIV/AIDS treatment using ARV medications and provide social workers with the tools they need to effectively coordinate care, counseling, and support services for people living with HIV/AIDS.

Based in Kiev, Ukraine, the Regional Knowledge Hub for the Care and Treatment of HIV/AIDS in Eurasia was established in March 2004 by WHO’s Regional Office for Europe. The project is supported by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Technische Zusammenarbeit (GTZ) and managed by the American International Health Alliance (AIHA) in cooperation with various national, regional, and international collaborating partners. The Knowledge Hub’s activities focus on assisting countries in the region that are currently experiencing the highest rates of HIV morbidity—Armenia, Bulgaria, Croatia, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Russia, Romania, Serbia, Tajikistan, and Ukraine—to build national health system capacity necessary to provide high-quality, comprehensive treatment, care, and support services to people living with HIV/AIDS.