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The USAID-funded Health Finance and Governance (HFG) project has spent the last six years working with partners in the Eastern and Southern Caribbean to help countries to plan for the sustainability of the HIV response. HFG has supported planning processes to increase inclusivity and build country ownership in developing strategies to mobilize domestic resources to prepare for the transition from Global Fund and PEPFAR funding. This is especially important for civil society organizations (CSOs) working with key populations.
As HFG comes to a close, it is important to reflect on how this work can be used and built upon moving forward. Overall, the sustainability plans for Barbados, the Dominican Republic, Guyana, Suriname and the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago outline strategies to mobilize domestic resources, build partnerships, strengthen the health system, and protect the human rights of people seeking testing, treatment, and care for HIV. These plans are based on data from National Health Accounts estimations, Sustainability Index Dashboard (SID) exercises, conversations with local stakeholders, and meetings with national governments and international partners through a participatory consultation process.
From this planning process it is clear that in order to sustain the HIV response in the Caribbean, it will be critical for governments to work with local CSOs to ensure that resources are available to continue their essential services to their communities. The sustainability plans call for a renewed commitment to a multi-sectoral response that engages new partners and a strengthened coordination role for ministries of health.
For more information on the HFG project’s work with countries in the Caribbean on sustainability planning see www.hfgproject.org.