OECS Media Release
Tuesday, April 4, 2017 — The Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO/WHO), in collaboration with the HIV/TB Elimination Project of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), held a two-day TB Roadmap and Findings Workshop in St. Lucia, from 28-29 March 2017, to review initial TB assessments made in the six recipient countries of the OECS Global Fund (GF) grant for TB elimination.
The TB assessments, which commenced in November 2016 and concluded in early February, 2017, carried out a comprehensive review of the TB services in the inter-programmatic management of TB and HIV, TB and Diabetes Mellitus and other comorbidities in the six participating countries: Antigua and Barbuda, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
The general aim of the assessments was identifying concrete actions that will support the countries’ obligations under the OECS regional GF grant, as well as actions by the Ministries to eliminate TB as a national public health problem within the context of the End TB strategy.
Regional TB Advisor for PAHO, Dr. Rafael Lopez, said that this follow-up workshop provides an avenue for National AIDS Programme Managers and TB Focal Point Managers from the six participating countries to review, discuss and agree on mechanisms that support the development and monitoring of national TB elimination plans for the GF grant and beyond. He said that the goal at the end of the meeting is to achieve a plan with concrete activities that outline responsible persons and dates when activities will be developed.
Dr. Cleophas d’Auvergne, OECS HIV/TB Elimination Project Coordinator, said that the results from the assessments coupled with decisions taken at the workshop will assist in the formulation of a strategic roadmap for TB and TB/HIV elimination in the OECS Region. “We want to be certified and validated as a TB Free Region,” Dr. d’Auvergne said.
The TB assessments were conducted by TB experts from the Regional Green Light Committee (rGLC). Following each of the assessment missions, meetings were held with the national health authorities, and the preliminary findings and recommendations were presented. The final reports from the assessment missions have been submitted to the rGLC for approval, prior to disseminating to the countries and GF Portfolio Manager for appropriate actions.
PAHO is providing technical support to the OECS countries for the implementation of TB interventions and TB/HIV collaborative activities under the OECS Global Fund (GF) grant.