Over the last 15 years, ITPC’s work has uncovered glaring gaps along the HIV treatment cascade — pointing to on-going needs of people living with HIV in Africa, Asia, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, and Latin America and the Caribbean. In the context of our overall work on treatment access, it has become clear that discussions about PrEP must be better integrated into issues related to treatment access. “Treatment as prevention” and similar frameworks reinforce that all steps of the cascade are linked and should be treated as such. As an extension of our existing work in community-led advocacy for HIV treatment, ITPC will lead a community-led consultative process on PrEP and, where relevant, its rollout and implementation.
Not Just Another Meeting
On May 17-18, 2017, ITPC kicked off this process with a global think tank meeting hosted in Port of Spain in Trinidad and Tobago. With support from the United States President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), United States Agency for International Development (USAID), and the M∙A∙C AIDS Fund, the two-day event brought together more than 45 participants from 20 different countries representing civil society, key populations, governments, and technical expert groups. Open discussions and working groups focused on key considerations of PrEP implementation across key population groups, and the development of innovative strategies to create better access to PrEP for communities.
Unlike other PrEP meetings held previously in Asia and Africa, this meeting represented a critical step in engaging all stakeholders in the process and ensuring that the context of each KP group is holistically understood and reflected.
What Comes Next?
Building on the foundation of this meeting, ITPC will develop a global policy brief and activist toolkit to help communities better understand the most pressing issues around PrEP. Using the toolkit, ITPC will also conduct hands-on treatment education training in select countries in Asia, Africa, and the Caribbean.