Nepal’s Development Partners Reaffirm Commitment for Effective Response to HIV/AIDS

August 12, 2011

August 12, 2011, Kathmandu — Nepal’s Development partners supporting the National HIV Response attended a meeting of stakeholders organised by the Ministry of Health and Population to discuss the current status of HIV service delivery by civil society in light of the transition of donor support— from the UN mechanism to that of the Government.

The Nepal’s Second Health Sector Programme (NHSP2) provisional five‐year allocation for HIV/AIDS is $76 million. Donors such as AusAID, DFID, Global Alliance Vaccine Initiative and the World Bank have channelled their funds through the pooled funding mechanism managed by the Government and other development partners are also providing support outside the Government channel.

Speaking on behalf of development partners, Ms. Shoko Noda, Chair of the HIV Theme Group and UNDP Country Director stressed the following points;

First, development partners remain committed to continue strengthening the HIV/AIDS response in Nepal as part of development assistance to NHSP2 and in order to enhance the Government’s ownership of the HIV/AIDS response.

Second, development partners commend the pioneering and important role of civil society including that of the People Living with HIV (PLHIV) in prevention, treatment, care and support services and most importantly their role in monitoring effective service delivery.

Third, development partners welcome enhanced coordination and communication led by the Government with all stakeholders to smoothly implement the new mechanism to directly contract HIV services provided by NGOs.

Fourth and most importantly, as of today, the Government has assigned contracts for HIV prevention for prisoners with civil society. The contracts for migrant workers and their families, harm reduction for injecting drug users, and men having sex with men are expected to be signed by the end of August, and for people living with HIV by mid‐September. We recognize that the transition to Government contract management should continue uninterrupted to avoid gaps in services for some targeted interventions. A contingency plan must be developed now to avoid any lapse in critical HIV services.

Ms. Shoko Noda emphasized that development partners are also committed to expedite any remaining administrative procedures in order to minimize disruptions in services and believe that a detailed roll‐out plan could be helpful to avoid any lapse in critical HIV services. Finally, she reiterated the commitment on behalf of the development partners to work jointly with the Government and the Civil Society and to arrive at practical and expedient solutions so that people most in need continue to receive life‐saving services.

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