Country Spotlight: India

Country Overview

The Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation (EGPAF) has been in partnership with Solidarity and Action Against The HIV Infection in India (SAATHII) since 2002. Together, we have tested over one million women over the life of the project. The program works to prevent mother-to-child transmission in the private health sector, filling a gap expressed by the Ministry of Health (MOH). The program supports services in 364 private and faith-based hospitals spread across four high HIV prevalence states in Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, and Karnataka.

Ann Summa/EGPAF

Our Work in India

SAATHII conducts trainings and roll-out of new WHO guidelines; facilitates trainings on PMTCT, early infant diagnosis (EID) of HIV, infant and young child feeding (IYCF), and community sensitization; develops job aids; provides resources and materials for service delivery; works directly with sites to plan and implement services, and provides support and TA for management of the program.

The EGPAF/India program complements the government programs by reaching unreached populations, specifically women accessing the private and faith-based maternity hospitals. The EGPAF/India program accounts for 10-20% of total coverage of PMTCT services in the private sector, and 80% of the private sector reporting in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, and Maharashtra.

SAATHII participates in various national-level technical working groups to develop policy and guidelines; plans program implementation; chairs the national country coordinating mechanism (CCM) for the Global Fund; and works with the National AIDS Coordinating Organization (NACO), the District AIDS Prevention Control Unit (DAPCU), and the State AIDS Control Society (SACS) to elevate the elimination agenda related to PMTCT.

The public-private partnership (PPP) model is unique to the India program, and was launched in 2009 by SAATHII as a strategy for increasing cost efficiency and expanding access to PMTCT services to women attending ANC and delivering in private facilities. The model involves a three-way collaboration between a government entity (thus far the State AIDS Control Agencies in the states of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra), a private hospital, and a technical agency. The State AIDS Control Agencies offer training for nurses and lab technicians; supplies of HIV test kits; registers, and reporting materials; drugs and other consumables; and IEC materials to the private hospitals. The private hospitals benefit from the government contributions and training, and are better able to offer sustainable quality services to the population through the cost-share. The technical agency (SAATHII) acts as the liaison between the other two entities, helps negotiate the PPP agreement, provides technical assistance and organizes state-wide experience sharing meetings.  EGPAF has supported SAATHII’s costs for serving as the technical partner within the PPP.

SAATHI works with DAPCU and SACS to build their capacity in the planning and implementation of PMTCT service delivery; monitors program progress using program data; supports logistics and supply chain management; and strengthens health systems at over 500 health facilities in more than 60 districts with regard to universal work precautions, hospital waste management, confidential HIV testing and counseling, and the provision of post-exposure prophylaxis as per the national protocol.

As of December 31, 2013, EGPAF-supported programs in India have: