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IDI is seeking a passionate and self-driven individual with a track record of leading and managing institutions of high repute, excellence and results. The individual with need to be a visionary and able to effectively manage a complex organization and initiate change in response to a dynamic environment. Reporting to the Board, the Executive Director, is responsible for the successful leadership and management of the organization in line with the IDI strategic direction.

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IDI staff participate in 9th International AIDS Conference

This years’ 9th International Aids Society (IAS) Conference on HIV Science (IAS 2017) is taking place at Palais des Congrès in Paris, France from July 23 to July 26, 2017. It is with great pleasure that I introduce you to the following staff who are representing the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI), College of Health Sciences, Makerere University at this years’ conference: 

  1. Mr Stephen Okoboi
  2. Dr Alex Muganzi
  3. Dr Barbara Castelnuovo
  4. Dr Andrew Kambugu
  5. Ms Ruth Kikonyogo
  6. Dr Namisi Charles
  7. Mr Mark Nsumba
  8. Dr Lydia Nakiyingi
  9. Dr Shadia Nakalema.

IAS 2017 will highlight major advancements in understanding the intricate network of viral-host interactions, in better characterizing and targeting the HIV reservoir, and ways to tackle persistent HIV, as well as the interaction and synergies with other fields, such as cancer research and immune-based therapies.

In addition, IAS is a platform through which new science on preventive and therapeutic vaccinations, improved tools and strategies for pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), as well as new insights into the novel areas of personalized medicine and bio-markers are anticipated. 

IDI successfully hosts the second Annual Performance Review for the Western Region Comprehensive HIV/AIDS project in Masindi and Hoima districts

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On June 28 in Masindi district and on June 29, 2017 in Hoima district, the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI) organized and held the second Annual Performance Review meeting for its Western Region Comprehensive HIV/AIDS project funded by the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Through the Comprehensive HIV/AIDS project, IDI provides HIV prevention, care and treatment services by strengthening District Health Systems at district, health facility and community levels. As such, the meeting brought together key players at the national and district level to jointly discuss key strategies to address identified gaps as well as guide districts in achieving set targets for the next financial year (April 2017 to March 2018). The meeting also highlighted district progress thus far, discussed challenges met, and revealed lessons learned during project implementation.

In his opening remarks, Dr. Alex Muganzi the Head of the Outreach programme at IDI commended the districts for the gains made thus far in providing comprehensive HIV/AIDS care services. Dr. Muganzi further expressed that IDI as a leading provider of HIV services in the region is pushing for increased identification of HIV positive individuals, linking and retaining them in HIV care and treatment as well as ensuring that those on antiretroviral therapy are virally suppressed through the Differentiated Service Delivery Models (DSDM).

Dr. Muganzi, highlighted that the DSDM model uses selected community-based sites to serve as drug pick-up points for ‘stable’ patients. "Now ‘stable’ HIV positive persons shall pick their drugs from the centres within their localities instead of trekking long distances to health facilities as has been the case,” said Dr. Muganzi. He added that this approach will help reduce on the distance these clients have to travel to get their ARVS at the main health facilities thereby offsetting transport costs for clients, improving adherence to treatment and ultimately leading to improved access and client retention in care. He also called for ensuring that voluntary male medical circumcision services are provided to all males ten years and above for HIV/AIDS prevention.

Also in attendance was Dr. Donna Kabatesi, CDC, Associate Director of Programs who stated that the differentiated service delivery models will give a big push towards the achievement of the first, second and third UNAIDS 90:90:90 targets of ensuring that 90 percent of all people living with HIV know their status, 90 percent of all people diagnosed with HIV infection receive sustained antiretroviral therapy, and 90 percent of all people receiving antiretroviral therapy are virally suppressed, by 2020.

In her closing remarks, Dr. Kabatesi urged IDI to target populations at the greatest risk and in urgent need of services. “Encourage men to test with their partners. Men remain a bigger part of those that need special interventions for HIV testing, linkage and retention in HIV care and treatment programs. A large number of young men do not know their HIV status. We need to work together to find men who are HIV positive and enroll them in care so as to close the tap of new infections,” said Dr. Kabatesi.

Also in attendance were representatives Ministry of Health – AIDS Control Program, CDC Uganda, Uganda AIDS Commission, Central Public Health Laboratories, National Medical Stores, Implementing Partners, District leaders, Cultural leaders, and Community Based Organizations, as key stakeholders in comprehensive HIV/AIDS services in the nine districts of Kiboga, Kyankwanzi, Hoima, Buliisa, Masindi, Kiryandongo, Kibaale, Kagadi and Kakumiro. The project has been in implementation since April 2015.

IDI's Annet Onzia is selected as a Mandela Washington Fellow

Congratulations go out to Annet Onzia, Head of section Reproductive Health at IDI-Mulago Adult Infectious Diseases Clinic for her selection and enrollment in the Mandela Washington Fellowship program 2017. Annet, now part of a cohort of a total of 1,000 Mandela fellows, is participating in a six-week public management and leadership training in the United States. 25 of the 1,000 fellows including Annet are currently attending Ohio State University, John Glenn College of Public Affairs, Center for African Studies.

Launched in 2014, the Mandela Washington Fellowship program for Young African Leaders is a flagship program for the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI) which embodies US commitment to invest in the future of Africa. As a criterion for consideration, participants in the fellowship program should be aged between 25 and 35 years and should display a record of accomplishment in promoting innovation and positive change in their respective organizations through community engagement and youth mentorship.

Annet was selected to join the YALI fellows program for her dedication to promoting sexual reproductive health in young adults through clinical care and research. Within her department, Annet runs specialized clinics for adolescents, pregnant women and marginalized members of society to whom she provides quality services while conducting research.

Ohio State University is among the 38 academic institutions across the United States participating in the YALI program that runs from June 16 to July 28, 2018. Of the 1,000 fellows, Uganda contributed 30 fellows from all professional backgrounds.

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