The global HIV/AIDS epidemic has become one of the greatest threats to human health and development. Although HIV and AIDS are found in all parts of the world, some areas are more afflicted than others. The worst affected region is sub-Saharan Africa, where in a few countries more than one in five adults is infected with HIV.
Weak infrastructure and shortages of health workers in the worst affected countries are major obstacles in tackling the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. Political and cultural attitudes are also significant impediments. For example, many parents and educators are reluctant to provide young people with adequate education about sex and sexual health.
There is much that can be done to reduce the impact of AIDS, beginning with the prevention of HIV transmission by empowering people with more knowledge on the latest research and guidance. Recognizing the transformative power of knowledge-sharing, K4Health provides a number of activities focused on knowledge-sharing around HIV/AIDS, including:
- Spearheading the development of Southern Africa HIV/AIDS Regional Exchange (SHARE), a community-driven information and communications hub through which people from across Southern Africa can share and find current information and knowledge on HIV prevention and related health topics;
- Creating and managing Toolkits on a variety of HIV/AIDS related topics, such as Adolescents Living with HIV (ALHIV), Family Planning and HIV Services Integration, Human Resources in Health (HRH) , Malawi HIV/AIDS, Multiple and Concurrent Partnerships, and Peace Corps – HIV/AIDS , to name a few;
- Developing eLearning courses on a variety of HIV/AIDS related topics, such as the PEPFAR eLearning courses on monitoring and evaluation and leadership topics, and SAfAIDS’ courses on Documentation and Communication of Best Practices for HIV/AIDS Programmes and Traditional Leaders Championing HIV and Gender-Based Violence Prevention;
- Supporting the national community information centers, such as Swaziland’s Nkamanzi Community Info Centre; and
- Implementing the K4Health/Nigeria Web-based Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Program for Medical Laboratory Scientists to continuously improve their knowledge, update and sharpen old skills, and acquire new ones on diagnosing HIV, TB, and malaria.