HIV is not merely a health issue. The epidemic is driven by a number of socio-economic factors. Therefore, health interventions alone are not sufficient to address causes and consequences of the epidemic. Addressing the various factors involved requires a multi-faceted and multi-sectorial response and central to this logic is Mainstreaming and Partnerships. Mainstreaming approaches to HIV have increasingly gained ground with the realization that the non-health sector can play an important and meaningful role in reducing vulnerability to HIV and mitigating its impact on those infected and affected. The importance of mainstreaming and partnerships becomes all the more relevant in a country like India which has low prevalence and low visibility, thus creation of HIV specific health infrastructure all across the country is not appropriate. The resources available under health infrastructure with any constituency, whether urban or rural, public or private, need to be optimally utilized to contribute to the National programme. It is important to note that mainstreaming does not replace the need for traditional approaches of prevention, care, support and treatment for People Living with HIV, it may instead complement and strengthen the same.
The operational definition of mainstreaming is “Integrated, inclusive and multi-sectoral approach that transfers the ownership of HIV/AIDS issues– including its direct and indirect causes, impact and response to various stakeholders, including the government, the corporate sector and civil society organizations”
The main purpose of mainstreaming is to ensure that all stakeholders and agencies, state and non-state, adapt their programmes and policies accordingly to addresses direct and indirect aspects of HIV and AIDS within the context of the normal functions of an organization. It requires exceptional responses that demonstrate timeliness, scale, inclusiveness, partnerships, innovation and responsiveness. Mainstreaming HIV and AIDS is collective and interactive process of learning, engagement, action, experimentation and reflection. For the national AIDS response Mainstreaming and Social Protection continue to be key strategies for risk reduction, integration and impact mitigation.
The Key achievement of mainstreaming:
The following major government departments have responded on HIV/AIDS mainstreaming activities –
Public Sector Undertaking
Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) have laid a strong foundation for the industrial development of the country. The public sector is less concerned with making profits. Hence, they play a key role in nation building activities, which take the economy in the right direction.
Indian Oil Corporation Ltd. (IOCL), Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd. (BPCL), IDBI Bank, Rajasthan State Mines and Minerals, Sriganganagar Sugar Mills, Rajasthan Skill and Livelihood Development Corporation have initiated acitivities on HIV prevention like organizing sensitization for workers, observation of World AIDS Day and World TB Day.
Number of industries have started HIV/AIDS programme.
· Ambuja Cement Foundation developed a plan for a year to prevent HIV.
· Raj West Power Limited (A leading Corporate) has established a Migration Information Center (MIC) at their industrial unit in Barmer.
· Industries like Ambuja Cement, SRF Chemicals, Shree Cement, Sab Miller have adopted workplace policy on HIV/AIDS and initiated workplace intervention.
· Fortis-Escorts group has included the HIV issue into their staff induction Programme. The group has taken steps forward in Partner Mainstreaming by initiating Workplace Intervention Program with various corporate houses i.e. Reliance Industries and Genus etc.
· Gas Authority of India Limited, Jodhpur has responded on HIV/AIDS awareness programme for the workforce.
· Number of corporate have signed workplace declaration on HIV/AIDS.
· All India Trade Union Congress Rajasthan Chapter have formed HIV/AIDS committee and workplace policy on HIV/AIDS
· More than 100 member of AITUC Rajasthan have been trained on HIV/AIDS.
Civil Society Organization
· Civil Society Organization forums have been formed in the six priority districts of Ajmer, Alwar, Jaipur, Jodhpur, Udaipur and Barmer.
· More than 114 non HIV NGOs, religious organization, corporate, union is part of civil society organization forums.
· HIV/AIDS activities are incorporated by the civil society organization forums as one of the major agenda.
· 100 Civil Society Organization have signed workplace declaration and committed for “Support to National Efforts for Mainstreaming of HIV”.
Social Protection Scheme for PLHIV and MARPs
Help desk established at ICTC, ART, DLNs, CSCs, TIs and DAPCUs under DAPCU led single window model at Ajmer, Alwar, Barmer, Jaipur, Sriganganagar, Udaipur and Tonk districts.