PSI/Togo promotes the ABCs (Abstinence, Be Faithful and Condoms) of HIV prevention via targeted peer education activities, mass media campaigns and special events. Evidence-based interventions encourage positive behaviors such as testing and discourage harmful cultural norms such as cross-generational sex to most-at-risk groups, including:
- Military personnel.
- Commercial sex workers.
- Rural populations.
- Men who have sex with men.
- Religious group members.
HIV-prevention products include Protector Plus and Rebel male condoms, Protectiv’ female condoms and Gel Intime lubricant. PSI/Togo also manages a national network of voluntary counseling and testing centers and collaborates with local care and treatment organizations to arrange referrals.
In 2002, Operation Haute Protection became PSI/Togo’s first military HIV prevention program in the West Africa Region. It brings peer education, mass media campaigns, condom distribution, and voluntary counseling and testing centers to military bases. Since its inception, Operation Haute Protection has successfully increased condom use and decreased the frequency of HIV infections among Togo’s armed forces.
PSI/Togo collaborates with Plan Togo, the Ministry of Health, local NGOs, and the private sector to ensure reliable access to long-lasting insecticide-treated nets (LLINs). Serena LLIN – the first brand in Togo – remains the best known and most widely available. These technologically advanced mosquito nets are treated with an insecticide that is safe to humans and lasts up to five years.
In the absence of donor funding, PSI uses sales revenues to keep nets available to the general population. Free LLINs go to high-priority groups – pregnant women, children under 5 and families in high prevalence areas. PSI and its partners distributed more than 32,000 nets in 2006. And in 2007, PSI/Togo estimated that it helped avert more than 50,000 cases of malaria.
PSI/Togo helps women obtain Confiance brand oral contraceptives and Depo-Provera injectable contraceptives through public sector clinics, private medical practices and pharmacies. Educational services explain how contraceptive use can help prevent pregnancy-related death and allow families to better space the births of their children. In 2007, PSI/Togo estimated that it helped prevent 22,000 unwanted pregnancies.
Limited donor support restricts PSI/Togo from fully addressing the country’s tremendous reproductive health needs. Thirty-two percent of married Togolese women of reproductive age have unmet needs for family planning services.