HIV AIDS LINK WORKER SCHEME
Background of Scheme Implementation
Over 57% of the HIV positive persons in India are estimated to be living in rural areas. The fight against HIV/AIDS particularly in rural areas becomes more pronounced in view of stigma and discrimination surrounding HIV, resulting in poor access to health care, gender inequality and above all infections going undetected or treated by unqualified practitioners. The existing primary health care system has limited scope and capacity to deal with the sensitive issues like HIV, sexuality and drug use. Keeping this in mind, Link worker Scheme has been conceived for Building the capacity of the rural community in fighting with HIV.
The scheme envisages identifying and training, this village level workforce of Supervisors,Link Workers and volunteers on issues of HIV/AIDS, gender, sexuality, STIs and above all on mobilizing difficult-to-reach, especially vulnerable sub populations including high risk individuals, youth and women. Linking these marginalized sub populations to the public health services for STI, ICTC, ART and then their follow up
Reach out to HRGs and vulnerable men and women in rural areas with information, knowledge, skills on STI/HIV prevention and risk reduction.
Increasing the availability and use of condoms among HRGs and other vulnerable men and women.
Establishing referral and follow-up linkages for various services including treatment for STIs, testing and treatment for TB, ICTC/PPTCT services, HIV care and support services including ART.
Creating an enabling environment for PLHA and their families, reducing stigma and discrimination against them through interactions with existing community structures/groups, e.g. Village Health Committees (VHC), Self Help Groups (SHG) and Panchayati Raj Institutes (PRI).
Activity of Project
Regular contact by Link worker to above mentioned population and communication on behavior change regarding risk identification HIV/STI,linkages to services as per need base.
Village level committee meetings such as SHG, Panchayat, SMC and stakeholders ASHA worker, AWW and health worker taking support for activity implementation, and creating awareness through by kalapathak, collage event, group meeting and advocacy meeting with govt. officials, and linkages services as per guideline.
For Village level support formation of volunteers group 1985 members, RRC group 1245 members and positive speakers in 100 village of LWS.
LWS staff day to day working with Civil hospital,Rural hospital and Primary health centre for linkages services to villagers and other social intaitalment support for coverage population.
Established condom depot for free distribution and easy accessibility of condoms 214 depot are available in village.
Working with People leaving with HIV/AIDS for follow-up of ART medicine,CD4 testing and other support and also child affected & infected HIV/AIDS. Working on to stop stigma& discrimination of PLHIV, reducing fear about HIV/AIDS.
Arranging health camp, HIV testing camp and STI screening camp at LWS implementing village with coordination with nearest ICTC centre & District Aids prevention control Unit Civil hospital.
The realities of women in rural India are difficult to comprehend. Women are deprived of their fundamental and personal rights, often as a matter of tradition. Besides their reservation in local politics, women are kept behind in the family and in the society. A systematic bias is evident against women in access to basic resources such as education, health and nutrition.
In rural areas, women are generally not perceived to have any meaningful income generation capacity, and hence, they are relegated mainly to household duties and cheap labor. Without the power to work and earn a good income, their voices are silenced. Even in matters of sex and child bearing, women often do not have the ability to oppose the wishes of their men.
In India majority of rural women depend on agriculture for survival, and less than 20 per cent own land. Land is a crucial economic asset for women in poor rural communities. Increasing livelihood insecurity makes her weak and dependent. Given the complementarities of patriarchy, caste and class, women of the poorest classes of marginalized Dalit and tribal communities bear much of the brunt of these insecurities, even as they also face severe restrictions on mobility and myriad forms of violence.
Although efforts have been taken to improve the status of women, but the constitution dream of gender-equality is miles away from becoming a reality, even today. The attention needs to be focused on the following issues to maintain the dignity and respect for women’s health in our country.