The U.S. Agency for International Development’s Community Partnership project aims to assist community-based organizations in Thailand to provide high quality HIV prevention, treatment and care to key populations, including men who have sex with men, transgender people, sex workers and people who inject drugs. Supported by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), this three-year project is implemented by the Thai Red Cross AIDS Research Centre (TRCARC) in partnership with three leading community-based organizations: the MPlus Foundation, the Rainbow Sky Association of Thailand (RSAT) and Service Workers in Group Foundation (SWING).
Key population-led health services
Many people who face the greatest risks of HIV infection in Thailand experience discrimination and
accessibility barriers to HIV services, such as inconvenient lo
cations, limited service hours and services
that are not tailored to their needs. A recent study conducted by TRCARC found that community
health services can be effectively delivered by organizations
comprised of and led by key populations.
Ensuring high quality services
To ensure high quality key population-led health services, this project will establish a training center for community-based organizations working with key populations to deliver efficient and effective HIV-related health services. The training center, in collaboration with local authorities, will follow set criteria for training and evaluation and provide a variety of trainings to meet the professional development needs of key population community health workers. Trainings will focus on effective delivery of HIV testing and counseling; sexually transmitted disease screening and treatment; antiretroviral treatment dispensing, and pre-exposure prophylaxis dispensing. Another critical component is to ensure that community health workers deliver client-centered prevention and care services without stigma and discrimination. This project will also support setting up a certification system to allow these organizations to be reimbursed for health service delivery and to ensure recognition of key population community-based organizations as formal HIV and health service providers.
In collaboration with local health authorities, this project will establish quality assurance systems in 13 priority provinces. It will also seek to mobilize financial resources and generate demand for sustaining this training program for key populations beyond the duration of the project.
Impact and Results
The partnership between TRCARC, MPlus, SWING and RSAT will support efforts to standardize and expand quality HIV service coverage by and for key populations, an approach critical to ending the HIV epidemic in Thailand.