Review group back in PNG to assess work on HIV/AIDS

National, Normal

The National, Friday, May 6, 2011

THE national and provincial response to HIV-AIDS is  under review by the National AIDS Council-commissioned independent review group.
The review group arrived in the country on April 27 for its periodical independent review.
The group is in the Highlands and Momase regions reviewing areas that may be driving the HIV epidemic and assessing the interventions along the Highlands Highway.
The review is to assess what PNG had achieved through the National AIDS Council Secretariat and its stakeholders through the implementation of national HIV strategic plans (NHS) 2011–15.
The review group would continue periodic visits over the next three years.
It would undertake assessments of a number of specific areas that are of strategic significance to NHS objectives.
The review group’s priorities include specific areas that may be driving the epidemic and interventions to address these; specific interventions that focus on those most vulnerable to HIV transmission, especially young people; assess processes to strengthen NACS including the restructure and systems for improved governance and coordination.
NACS director Wep Kanawi said: “We are always pleased to have the IRG mission in the country and we look forward to their feedback.”
He said the IRG would conduct one visit annually each year until 2013.
Kanawi said the IRG would review provisions within the response of work with people and contexts that are vulnerable to HIV, and where effective interventions have the potential to arrest and turn back the epidemic, with focus on young people.
“The IRG will assess progress on the restructure and functions of NACS and provide guidance on its role in policy development and best practice guidance, coordination, monitoring and evaluation and the provision of technical assistance,” he said.
The team has specialists with background from a wide range of fields including policy development and management.