ASHM has partnered with the Catholic Church Health Services (CCHS) in Papua New Guinea and Maluk Timor in Timor-Leste to co-design and implement the Supporting Triple Elimination in Papua New Guinea & Timor-Leste (STEPT) Project. The project aims to reduce parent-to-child transmission of HIV, Hepatitis B, and Syphilis in selected ANC clinics in both countries.
The STEPT Project focuses on training and upskilling healthcare professionals in HIV and Syphilis testing and the administration of the Hepatitis B birth dose. In Papua New Guinea, the project has already made significant strides, with 34 participants, including nurses and midwives, from five provinces taking part in a comprehensive training program. The training covered various aspects of HIV and Syphilis testing and treatment, as well as the administration of the Hepatitis B birth dose vaccine.
One participant shared their experience, stating, “This training is very effective so I will go back and have an inhouse training with all facility staff and pass the information on Triple Elimination on HIV, Syphilis and Hepatitis B to prevent mother-to-child transmission”.
In June, representatives from the Ministry of Health in Timor-Leste participated in a knowledge exchange to Papua New Guinea. During the visit, they had the opportunity to observe integrated HIV and Syphilis testing and treatment as part of ANC services at CCHS’ primary health care clinics, and learn about the journey CCHS has taken towards integrating these services.
Throughout the visit, colleagues from Papua New Guinea shared their experiences, tools, and lessons learned, offering support to their counterparts from Timor-Leste.
Following the visit, the representative’s observations and experiences from PNG were shared with both service-level providers, through a meeting with midwives at the pilot facility, and high-level stakeholders. The next phase of the STEPT project in Timor-Leste was co-designed throughout this process.
This important work is only possible because of our funders, members and donors. If you would like to donate, visit https://ashm.org.au/donate/