July 15, 2024

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Humana reaches 21 Million in 21 years through its “Total Control of the Epidemic (TCE)” HIV/AIDS programme

1 December 2021 – As Humana People to People marks World Aids Day it has today announced that it has reached 21 million people in 21 years with its HIV and AIDS work, entitled “Total Control of the Epidemic – TCE.”  

The programme, marking its 21st year, is based on the person-to-person mobilisation of people for HIV testing, referral for treatment and care for those on treatment and prevention and sits across 12 countries in Africa and Asia through partner members in countries including South Africa, Namibia, Mozambique, Angola, Congo and India. 

Humana People to People developed the TCE programme and implemented the first pilot project in Zimbabwe in the year 2000, at a time when the country was hard-hit by alarming death rates due to AIDS. The TCE concept’s success is driven by its large-scale community mobilisation, which seeks to attain HIV prevention. People in remote settings and most-at-risk population groups are informed so they can make individual decisions on controlling the further spread of HIV.   

Currently, the TCE concept has been adapted to support the UNAIDS 95-95-95 strategy targets of finding the 95% of people missing to be tested for HIV; initiating 95% of people living with HIV on early treatment and; supporting 95% of the people under treatment to adhere on treatment until they achieve viral load suppression. Members of Humana People to People are actively working with local governments’ HIV/AIDS commissions in most countries in southern Africa, India and China as they contribute to achieving the set targets.  

Speaking about the success of TCE, Snorre Westgaard, Chairperson of Humana People to People said: 

“From the very beginning 21 years ago, the core of our programme was centred around getting to people and communities that are very hard to reach, often in highly rural areas as well as the big cities. There, we find the most at-risk populations, including young women and girls. It is critically important that they are supported by our experienced teams, who can intervene early to help prevent the spread of the virus. 

“Through our TCE programme, we have been able to connect over 21 million people with information, services, and the support they need. And we are ensuring that through our TCE centres, we provide community members with the guidance to live healthy lives.  

“An essential part of our work to end the pandemic is aided through our TCE Index Tracking process which ends with our TCE Field Officers identifying sexual partners and children of those who have tested and confirmed with a positive HIV status, to ensure that they are tested accordingly. 

“Humana People to People believe that only the people can liberate themselves from the AIDS epidemic, which is why our community-based programme is highly efficient in practicality and through the years we will be able to reach more people in the communities that have been identified as high-risk”. 

Despite this vitally important work, the AIDS epidemic continues to persevere as seen in the 2020 Global HIV statistics released by the UN AIDS organisation. The report’s figures show that in Eastern and Southern Africa 20.6 million people were living with HIV, 670,000 were newly infected, 310,000 had AIDS-related deaths and 16.0 million had access to AIDS treatment.  

Although these numbers are alarming, as a community-based project, Humana People to People’s staff and volunteers are consistently working hard to mitigate the situation by providing access to HIV testing. This often takes place in the privacy of people’s own homes to reduce the stigma associated with a positive HIV status. In addition, they help to connect people affected by HIV and AIDS with family and community-based support groups. 

The race to end the pandemic by 2030 involves establishing more evidence to communities that are hard to reach because of the location, scale-up programmes like the TCE HIV programme to ensure that the right information and care gets to people that are either positive or do not have knowledge of their status, and accelerate the speed of information transmission, testing, and medication provision.  

ENDS 

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