PEPFAR funds boost HIV care at Medical Research Foundation

Left to right Terrence Deyalsingh, Minister of Health; John W. McIntyre, U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires; Dr. Jeffery Edwards, Director Medical Research Foundation and Dr. Deyde Varough, Caribbean Regional Program Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) speaking with reporter

Chargé d’Affaires John W. McIntyre today thanked Trinidad and Tobago’s Minister of Health Terrence Deyalsingh for his commitment to successfully mobilizing funding through the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) to the Medical Research Foundation (MRF). They were at the time touring the MRF at Queen’s Park East, Port of Spain.

The funding support programs that expand access to treatment and facilitate the early initiation of life-saving HIV medications, as well as for the hiring of staff and minor refurbishments the MRFs clinic. Staff received regular and on-going support from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for training, implementation of an after-hours clinic, and other programs which successfully increase access to services for patients.

As a result of these efforts, over 500 patients were successfully returned to care and re-initiated on ART.  Approximately 140 patients initiated treatment for the first time, a 46 percent increase to what the clinic accomplished prior to the U.S. Embassy, Ministry of Health and CDC collaboration.

Clinic tour
Patient tracer Nathifa Purcell at the Medical Research Foundation speaking with Terrence Deyalsingh, Minister of Health; John W. McIntyre, U.S. Embassy Chargé d’Affaires and MRF Nurse Manager Avionne Jones.