Dialogue in Maphalaleni Chiefdom
December 24, 2015
After the nearby health facility transitioned to the Early Access to ART for All intervention, a community dialogue was conducted in Maphalaleni Chiefdom on Thursday 22 October 2015. The chair of the meeting, community leader Mr Maphevu Dlamini, pointed out that the intervention is now commonly referred to as ‘shesha’, which means early or fast.
The senior nursing sister Ms Magagula explained that people do not have to wait until their CD4 cells drop but can take up ART immediately after an HIV-positive diagnosis. The nurse also informed the community about practicalities, for instance that blood sample transportation days are Monday to Wednesday.
During the meeting, the Pelepele Drama Group offered edutainment about early access to ART and treatment adherence. After this, one of the topics the participants discussed was young people's concerns to get tested and their fear to disclose their HIV status to a new partner. A total of 96 community members attended the dialogue, and 46 people accessed HIV testing and counselling services on site.
This article was published in the MaxART newsletter 7th edition - December 2015