UNODC and the Ministry of Health conduct a joint mission to Campo Grande to monitor testing actions of HIV/AIDS


Brasilia, 04 February 2015 - On January 22 nd, during the visit to Brazil of the Head of the of HIV Section of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) HQ in Vienna, Monica Beg, UNODC and the STD, AIDS and Viral Hepatitis Department of the Ministry of Health organized a mission to Campo Grande, to get to know the work of the Associação Águia Morena. This organization makes interventions with populations in vulnerable situations, to apply HIV testing, using the method of oral fluid.

Since 2013, UNODC has been supporting a Ministry of Health's initiative known as "Live Better by Knowing", which aims to increase the access to quicker tests using oral fluid as sample and counting on a partnership with 54 NGOs. This project focuses on people who use alcohol and other drugs, gay men and men who have sex with other men, sex workers, transvestites and transsexuals.

With this initiative, 11,413 people were tested; among them it was listed 1,966 drug users (out of which 1.9% were identified as HIV-positive and were referred to health services).

One of the 54 NGOs participating in the initiative is the Águia Morena Harm Reduction Association. For developing one of the strategic projects and because of their performance, a mission was organized to Campo Grande so this NGO could demonstrate its know-how to UNODC.

All day long, the UNODC team visited different spots in the city under intervention of the Águia Morena Association.

The UNODC team could follow the whole process: approach, raising the awareness, HIV testing and counseling performed by the association's qualified personnel.

For Monica Beg it has been quite striking to see the dedication and the commitment of the government and civil society to this issue, as they seek to reach the population who uses smoked cocaine and lives in vulnerable situations on the streets, experiencing stigma, discrimination and different forms of violence when seeking diagnosis, prevention and care for HIV, AIDS, and viral hepatitis.

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