Sexually transmitted infections, including HIV/AIDS

WHO activities to support the South Pacific

14 April 2014 - At last week’s Pacific Islands Regional Multi-Country Coordinating Mechanism (PIRMCCM) meeting in Nadi Dr Liu Yunguo, WHO Representative for the South Pacific, delivered the following message to partners who were gathered to consider: strategies for urgent action on STIs and HIV; management of varied tuberculosis burdens across the Pacific; effective mobilisation of resources to eliminate malaria; and to ensure initiatives in all areas are tailored to the Pacific.

Since the early stage of the HIV epidemic, WHO has been the lead international technical health agency that deals with the health sector response to HIV/AIDS. WHO has been providing technical assistance to PICs in the following areas: care, treatment and support; surveillance; targeted HIV prevention; prevention in the health care settings; blood safety and laboratory diagnosis of HIV; and STI case management.

In the PICs, WHO’s work in STI and HIV/AIDS control is conducted through collaboration and partnerships with other key partners as part of the implementation of the Pacific Regional HIV Strategy and Implementation Plan within UNAIDS, as well as through direct support to individual countries, research institutions and non-governmental and community based organizations. WHO is also playing an active role in supporting the PICs for the implementation of the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria (GFATM) grants.

In the context of the Universal Access to HIV prevention, care treatment and support, WHO focus its support to countries in the following strategic directions:

  • Enabling people to safety know their status through confidential HIV counseling and testing;
  • Maximising the health sector’s contribution to HIV prevention through positive prevention, STI control, prevention in the health care settings and innovative HIV prevention strategies;
  • Scaling up HIV care, treatment and support, including antiretroviral therapy;
  • Strengthening strategic information on HIV and STIs to guide more effective response in the health sector through improved surveillance, monitoring and evaluation of the health sector response towards Universal Access; and
  • Strengthening health systems.