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Health and HIV & Aids

Tear has a longstanding history of work in the area of health care, together with partners in Africa, Asia and Latin America. The work includes improving health care services, and increasing people’s access to quality health care. We work primarily at local level, prioritising improvements for those who are most vulnerable.

Tear follow’s the World Health Organisation’s approach to basic health care, which encompasses the following aspects: nutrition, sanitary facilities, health education, rehabilitation, family planning, mother and child care, vaccination, the prevention and control of malaria/tuberculosis/leprosy, as well as trauma counselling and psychiatric care.

Collaborations with government structures

The primary responsibility for people’s access to quality health care lies with the state. Therefore Tear works with partners that collaborate with existing governmental health structures and facilities, from the perspective that any health related programme should become increasingly independent from foreign support and be incorporated into the public health structures. A guiding principle is local embedding of health programmes through participatory involvement of the population and key stakeholders in planning, elaboration, implementation and evaluation of health programmes.

Interventions

Health programmes supported by Tear may include the following type of interventions: training local health staff to improve quality and accessibility, empowering vulnerable people to present their specific health needs in order to demand more inclusive health care, and building local capacity to hold local leadership accountable on the quality and accessibility of care. Some partners focus on access to basic health care, while others have specialised in WASH, in sexual and reproductive health or in health care for particular vulnerable groups, such as youth, people living with HIV or vulnerable children. 

HIV and Aids

In many of the countries where we work, HIV and Aids poses a specific threat to people’s health, and has far reaching implications, not only for people’s health, but also socially and economically. The impacts reach beyond the personal sphere, impacting families, communities and society as a whole.

Inequities

For people on HIV treatment in a high-income setting, their life expectancy is nearly the same as a person who does not have the virus. However, only two out of five people living with HIV have access to antiretroviral therapy. Among people who do not have access, great inequities exist. People living with HIV are often left behind because they are not benefitting from health care, employment, education or social protection. This is often due to stigma, discrimination, prohibitive laws and policies or a lack of services.

There are many factors that contribute to the spread of the epidemic: ignorance of prevention and care, neglect and denial, gender inequality, discrimination and stigmatisation, poverty and exclusion, cultural customs, violence and conflict.

Partners

Tear supports faith based organisations and churches in Africa, Asia, and Latin America that actively address HIV and Aids in their communities. These organisations work in the areas of prevention, care and support, impact mitigation and advocacy. Interventions include a focus on target groups that are extra vulnerable, such as youth, or pregnant women or marginalised women and girls.

Interventions

Partner interventions include the following; prevention and awareness raising,  stimulating theological and ethical reflection and dialogue, promoting life skills education on HIV and aids in schools, churches and community groups, reducing transmission of HIV, care and support for positive people, secondary prevention, reducing mother-to-child transmission, promoting voluntary counselling and testing, improving the healthcare system and access to medication, impact mitigation, and using available channels for national and international advocacy to speak up for the interests of people living with HIV or at risk of contracting it.

Ontwerp & realisatie: Nilsson