PSI opened an office in the Kingdom of Lesotho in 2001, launching a condom social marketing program and a network of HIV testing and counseling (HTC) services that remain a model of efficiency and government partnership. Since its inception, PSI has positively impacted the lives of hundreds of thousands of people and prevented thousands of HIV infections. In addition to PSI’s core programming areas, PSI has expanded its portfolio to include HIV prevention interventions in the workplace; diagnosis and treatment of sexually transmitted infections; and comprehensive HIV prevention activities including voluntary medical male circumcision with the Lesotho Defence Forces.
PSI works throughout Lesotho with a head office in Maseru and Regional Programming sub-offices located in Maseru, and Mafeteng. PSI provides counseling and testing services via both fixed sites and mobile clinics from these locations and maintains extensive outreach to remote, rural areas through far reaching HTC outreach and condom social marketing activities.
PSI/Lesotho estimates that in 2015, its products and services helped avert 931,259 DALYs, including, by health area:
- 870,890 HIV DALYs
- 60,369 FP DALYs
PSI/Lesotho’s family planning programs also provided 255,453 couple-years of protection.
These statistics include the impact of sales and distribution of condoms by PSI/South Africa, PSI’s regional commercial entity in Southern Africa.
Voluntary Testing and Counseling
PSI/Lesotho’s network of New Start ® HTC Centres currently includes both fixed sites and mobile units. Beginning in 2012, PSI plans to increase mobile outreach and support door-to-door HTC to better complement the government’s existing HTC activities and more effectively serving vulnerable groups who are unlikely to access fixed site services. PSI-supported HTC sites provided counseling and testing to more than 250,000 Basotho since 2005.
In addition to direct service provision, PSI/Lesotho is a national leader in training for HTC, providing pre- and in-service training and quality assurance to a wide variety of Government and non-Governmental partners. Additionally, New Start ® centers regularly host students attending the National University of Lesotho for professional attachments in counseling. As in all program areas, PSI complements service activities with both branded and generic behavior change communication. PSI/Lesotho’s acclaimed “Test for Your Team” soccer tournaments have been held at the District level throughout the Kingdom and was a tremendous success resulting in a significant increase in use of HTC services among men.
Condom Social Marketing
PSI/Lesotho’s condom social marketing activities include commercial sales of three brands of male condoms (Trust, Trust Studded, & Lovers Plus Colored and Flavored) as well as the distribution of free-issue condoms to ensure access and availability. More than 40 million condoms have been sold and distributed since PSI/Lesotho began programming in 2001.
Commercial sales of condoms are realized through an extensive network of wholesale marketers, retail outlets, and private businesses, harnessing the power of the market to drive demand and sales. PSI compliments sales by assisting the Government of Lesotho through an aggressive system of free condom distribution through workplaces, health centers, and community-based organizations.
PSI/Lesotho’s sales and distribution activities are complemented by state of the art social marketing and a wide range of behavior change communication, including multi-channel media campaigns, a regular schedule of community mobilization events, and targeted interpersonal communication provided by PSI’s team of full-time Field Educators.
PSI/Lesotho also receives US government-donated female condoms (FC) every year, which are distributed through PSI testing and counseling centers, public and private universities, ALAFA participating factories and other private sector partners. An expanded FC pilot known as “Silk-ee” comprising enhanced free distribution of a new branded FC product was launched in February 2011 and is scheduled for a commercial launch in 2012.
“Comprehensive HIV Prevention” is the military maneuver being supported by PSI with the Lesotho Defense Forces (LDF). Launched in 2007, PSI/Lesotho’s innovative collaboration with the LDF utilizes behavioral research; tailored condom promotion and distribution; peer education; and HTC capacity building and services to help men and women in uniform protect themselves against HIV/AIDS.
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands
- U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- U.S. Agency for International Development
- United Nations Population Fund
- Johnson and Johnson
- Aon Insurance Brokers
- U.S. Department of Defense
- U. S. Government’s Presidents Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief
- Lesotho Ministry of Health and Social Welfare
- Lesotho National AIDS Commission
- Lesotho Defence Forces
- Kick 4 Life
- POC CD4 Testing Improves Effective Referrals From Community to Clinical Settings in Lesotho
The study conducted a retrospective analysis of 42,605 records of clients 2 years and older, seen between October 2014 and September 2015, through mobile HTC, home-based and static sites in Lesotho. A higher proportion of those receiving POC CD4 count were successfully linked to HIV care. Overall, these findings support deployment of more PIMA machines particularly at mobile and stand-alone HIV testing services where there are more HIV positives.
- Finding HIV-Positive Children and Adolescents, and Improving Effective Referrals
The study takes a targeted community-based approach of tracking index family members at risk of HIV in Lesotho. Results indicate that the index tracking model can be a viable method for reaching children who are HIV-positive. Referral uptake is high and will contribute towards high ART coverage among children and adolescents.
- AEA 2014: Serving the Poor and Sustaining Condom Markets – An Evaluation of Six African Countries
The Total Market Approach is a system in which all sectors – public, social marketing, and commercial – work together to deliver health choices for all population segments. The goal is to ensure that the poorest communities receive free products, those with slightly greater resources benefit from partially subsidized products, and those with a greater ability to pay purchase products from the commercial sector. The objective of this evaluation is to determine if actions taken by all three market sectors over the last five to seven years have increased condom use in an equitable and sustainable way in six African countries.
- Total Market Approach: Lesotho
This case study describes the market for male condoms in Lesotho, and the roles of the public, social marketing, and commercial sectors in the market.
- Total Market Approach in Six African countries
The Total Market Approach (TMA) is a system in which all sectors – public, subsidized and commercial – work together to deliver health choices for all population segments. In 2013, PSI completed six TMA case studies describing the condom markets in Botswana, Lesotho, Mali, South Africa, Swaziland and Uganda. These case studies also propose a set of recommendations for improving the effectiveness, efficiency and sustainability of condom markets.
- How to Use the Inner Condom
Animated video on how to use the female condom or inner condom. Brought to you by Lovers+ and PSI/South Africa.
- PSI’s Southern Africa Regional Platform Condom Social Marketing
PSI has a new regional condom brand in Southern Africa. Check out this video describing how the new program works.
- 2012 Mid Year Region and Country Dashboards, Southern Africa
Mid-year Southern Africa region and country impact dashboards for 2012
- 2011 Region and Country Dashboards, Southern Africa
Southern Africa region and country impact dashboards for 2011
- Trust, Caution, and Condom Use With Regular Partners: An Evaluation of the Trusted Partner Campaign Targeting Youth in Four Countries
This article describes the Trusted Partner regional behavior change communication campaign and uses data from Lesotho, Mozambique, Uganda, and Zambia to evaluate the impact of the campaign on elements related to trust and condom use with regular partners by youth aged 15-24.