#VP07: Effectiveness Of Safe Harm Reduction Spaces For Persons Who Inject Drugs Living With HIV And Viral Hepatitis Co-Infections In Lagos, Nigeria

Author: James Eghaghe Franca Monyei

Theme: Models of Care Year: 2021

Background: To reduce impact of inadequate access to Viral hepatitis treatment services amongst People Who Inject Drugs (PWIDs) living with HIV through strengthening local capacity of PWID community-led services to promote safe healthy spaces. From current information from the WHO viral hepatitis B&C is a deadly contagious virus which has more virulence and devastating complications than HIV. However, there is no national prevalence study on Hep B&C in Nigeria conducted till date due to criminalization of PWID safe spaces and hindering advocacy for access to treatment support. Description of Model of Care: Using success gained from our harm reduction community awareness program in previous sites in Lagos state- Nigeria, NNPUD trained and engaged the services of 10 PWIDs_LHIV /HBV role models from the 10 allotted districts. They were trained in community-based harm reduction and encouraged to form 10 support groups of 20 PWIDs_LHIV/HBV each. They were serviced with lists (phone numbers, locations) of defaulters. Their activities on a weekly basis included: – Linkages of PWID_LHIV to peer support groups for effective messaging on viral hepatitis. – Escort services to HIV/Viral Hepatitis treatment department in the health facilities to reduce stigma. – Scaling up of Condom/Lubricants/Needle/Syringes Distribution. – Home based support services. Effectiveness: At the end of the 9months: 90% of 200PWID_LHIV/HBV clients reached willingly allowed their sexual partners to access HIV/Viral Hepatitis testing & treatment if identified HIV positive. 90% of 200PWID_LHIV/HBV clients reached willingly re-enrolled into HIV/Viral Hepatitis Treatment. 90% of 200PWID_LHIV/HBV clients on HIV /Hepatitis Treatment reached achieved Viral suppression. 90% of 200PWID_LHIV/HBV clients reached are knowledgeable in HIV/Viral Hepatitis Treatment Adherence Literacy. Conclusion and Next Steps: MHRFP-N created a learning platform promote advocacy for safe spaces for community support groups of PWIDs_LHIV/HBV which enhanced behavior change. We will be advocating for effective treatment access by promoting community-led organizing of affected community. Disclosure of Interest: None

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