A partnership that includes PEPFAR, USAID, MEASURE Evaluation, and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement.
The Partnership for HIV-Free Survival (PHFS) was launched in March 2013 as a six-country initiative — Tanzania, Kenya, Uganda, Mozambique, Lesotho, and South Africa — designed to assist the countries with their current national efforts to improve postnatal HIV, maternal, and infant care and nutrition support through effective implementation of the 2010 World Health Organization (WHO) Guidelines on HIV and Infant Feeding.
While the 2010 WHO Guidelines on Preventing Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) of HIV, including the Guidelines on HIV and Infant Feeding, provide normative guidance on how the continuum of care can be strengthened and improved for HIV-infected mothers and their infants, the countries are still working out how to effectively and extensively implement these guidelines.
Using quality improvement methods, the PHFS will support existing country-specific protocols and the ongoing nutrition assessment, counseling, and support (NACS) activities to achieve four essential steps of postnatal mother-infant care that results in excellent nutritional and HIV care for both the HIV-exposed and non-exposed infants over the first 24 months of life.
Focus and Aims
PHFS seeks to accelerate the progress of existing national programming using quality improvement (QI) methodologies and a multi-country learning platform established to share successful ideas, models, and interventions.
While countries will continue to focus on the entire continuum of PMTCT care, starting in the antenatal period, the PHFS will focus on the postnatal pathway as countries strive to achieve their elimination of mother-to-child transmission (eMTCT) goals. The PHFS has these specific aims across six countries, within target populations:
- Achieve more than 90 percent coverage of eMTCT services, thereby reducing MTCT from 15 percent to 1 percent
- Achieve more than 90 percent coverage of NACS programming
Using QI to Identify and Spread Best Practices
Partners will apply QI methods in a small number of highly functional sites to gain technical learning, with a focus on improving service quality and efficiency. Using data to demonstrate the effect of proposed “change ideas,” the program will develop a “best practice” in one or two districts of each country and then rapidly spread the implementation lessons learned throughout the country. The PHFS learning platform will serve as a vehicle for spreading successful ideas and other lessons from the front line of individual sites to other member countries.
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