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Ukraine is preparing for a massive PrEP invasion!

On 21 November in Kyiv was held a national conference on the introduction of pre-exposure prophylaxis (#PrEP) in Ukraine, in which attended by representatives of government agencies, heads of specialized medical institutions who will implement the program in the regions, leaders and representatives of MSM service NGOs, international organizations and agencies CDC, @UNAIDS Ukraine, WHO. The organizer of the meeting was the Public Health Center of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine. Thank you to Віталій Андрес (Andres Vitalii) and Tatyana Krasnopolska for the excellent moderation of the meeting!

Taking into account the success of the pilot project that is implementing since November 2018 by the public organization Alliance.Global supported by #CDC and Альянс громадського здоров’я Alliance for Public Health among 100 MSM and transgender women in Kyiv, since 2019 the program of pre-exposure prophylaxis will be distributed throughout Ukraine! Of course there are a lot of nuances and technical difficulties on the way to the successful implementation of the intervention, but I am confident that combining the efforts of the government sector and public organizations will make PrEP one of the most popular methods of HIV prevention.

Thus, at #PEPFAR’s funds through the Public Health Center of the Ministry of Health of Ukraine it is planned to provide 1,500 yearly PrEP courses for people at high risk of HIV infection, in particular for MSM, sex workers and HIV negative partners in discordant pairs. And by the Global Fund funds through the Alliance for Public Health – 1,400 annual courses for MSM (all Ukraine).

A lot of discussions was focused on the possibility of PrEP receiving, not only on a daily basis, but also “on demand”, regarding the alternative possibility of PrEP receiving in a non-governmental organization, by post and in a pharmacy. Member of the National Council for TB and HIV/AIDS (the Ukrainian CCM) Andrii Chernyshev, emphasized that in order to maximize the proximity of PrEP to a client and include it in the basic package of HIV prevention services at the expense of the state budget, there is an exist need for systematic advocacy at the national level, education of social and medical workers and learning of the best world practices for PrEP implementing.

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