Today, February 8, 2017, the International Treatment Preparedness Coalition (ITPC) and ITPC West Africa are proud to officially launch our new project Regional Community Treatment Observatory in West Africa (RCTO-WA).
The official ceremony of the launch took place at the Novotel Hotel in Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire, with distinguished guests and representatives from all 11 countries. Keynote speakers included Dr. Raymonde Coffie, Cote d’Ivoire Minister of Health and Public Hygiene; Dr. Djeneba Ouattara, Chair of the Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM) – Cote d’Ivoire; UNAIDS representative; Professor Serges Eholie, Head of Department of Infectious and Tropical Disease; and Astou Diop, Chair of ITPC West Africa. The launch, which comes after months of an intense pre-grant implementation process, also premiered a short film introducing the project and its goal over the next three years.
The project, supported by the Global Fund from January 2017 to December 2019, will extend community-based monitoring of HIV treatment to 11 West African countries: Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Senegal, Sierra Leone, and Togo. The goal is to increase access to treatment across the region.
“The fact is we need to change our approach. We need to integrate and implement the management of HIV/AIDS within the health systems and the community systems so that a person living with HIV has access to treatment. If we manage to do this I think by 2020 we will have taken a big step forward and 50% more people will have access to treatment.”- Alain Manouan, Community Treatment Monitoring Project Director.