Sunday, December 16, 2007

DOH, HAIN Developed PEP Guidelines

The Post Exposure Prophylaxis (PEP) Policy Guidelines was developed in response to the results of the External Assessment of VCT (Voluntary Counseling and Testing) and Procurement and Supply Chain Management for HIV and AIDS Program. The Assessment recommended the need for the PEP system to be in place in all health facilities.

The PEP Guidelines will serve as the national guideline for all government hospitals and other health care facilities as well as for private hospitals and private practitioners. The availability of PEP for health workers will serve to increase staff motivation to work with people infected with HIV, and may help to retain staff concerned about the risk of exposure to HIV in the workplace. Within the health sector, PEP should be provided as part of a comprehensive standard precaution package that reduces staff exposure to infectious hazards at work.

To facilitate the development of the PEP Policy Guidelines, the Department of Health partnered with HAIN with support from the World Health Organization (WHO).

The 3-month process involved conducting meetings and consultations with health researchers, program directors, and health practitioners in the field of HIV and AIDS leading to the formation of PEP Technical Working Group (TWG).

HAIN prepared the preliminary guidelines and through these meetings, the TWG discussed and provided more input to the draft guidelines for improvement. In finalizing and to further enhance the guidelines, HAIN organized a validation writeshop in September 17, 2007 and has invited participants from regional partners and treatment hubs who are in the frontline of AIDS treatment, care and support.

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