UNIVERSAL ACCESS TO HIV AND STIs PREVENTION SERVICES
Universal Access to HIV and STIs Prevention Services
To maximise the impact of the HIV and sexually transmitted infections prevention interventions in Kenya, the HIV Prevention Revolution Roadmap 2030 recommends the need for a focused approach in HIV prevention. It calls out for efforts to maximise efficiencies by prioritising implementation to scale of high impact interventions in prioritized geographical locations and populations at higher risk of HIV infections. KASF II adopts the prioritization approach with the aim of bringing quality HIV prevention programmes to scale in line with universal health coverage. Structural barriers that limit sub-populations from accessing HIV services will be addressed through a sector-wide approach. KASF II will strengthen the use of data to derive programmatic gaps and priority areas of action. Efforts to strengthen interventions that address Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) and viral hepatitis will be enhanced.
Elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV, syphilis and viral hepatitis will be a critical marker of universal access. For this reason, pregnant and breastfeeding women (PBFW) will continue to be a priority for HIV and STI prevention under KASF II. Though the number of children (0-14 years) newly infected with HIV has dropped over the years, in 2020, 10.8% of new infections among children were estimated to be infected with HIV vertically from mother-to-child (HIV Estimates 2020). MTCT rates are relatively high in low medium prevalence areas, of the 29 counties, collectively contributing to 25% of the new HIV infections among children.
Enhance identification and linkages to prevention, treatment, care and support services is also a key priority under KASF II. In 2019, approximately 79% of Kenyans were aware of their HIV status. The country missed the opportunity to provide life-saving medication to 11% (158,000) of people living with HIV who were not aware of their status. The knowledge of HIV status among men and boys is 88% much lower than that of women and girls at 94 %. Delay in awareness of HIV status results in poor health outcomes at an individual level and low levels of viral load suppression desired for interrupting HIV transmission at the population level.
The overriding mandate of National AIDS Control Council (NACC) is to provide leadership in policy and strategy formulation, resource mobilization and coordination of stakeholders in implementing and monitoring of the HIV response.