Detailed Mechanism Funding and Narrative

Details for Mechanism ID: 5077
Country/Region: Uganda
Year: 2007
Main Partner: Management Sciences for Health
Main Partner Program: NA
Organizational Type: NGO
Funding Agency: USAID
Total Funding: $150,000

Funding for Laboratory Infrastructure (HLAB): $150,000

The Leadership, Management and Sustainability Program (LMS) will provide technical support to the Joint Centre for Clinical Research (JCRC) to strengthen the managers and the management systems in JCRC's recently expanded laboratory network and further expand the national program for quality laboratories. A Ugandan organization, JCRC pioneered HIV/AIDS care and research in the country. Under the TREAT Program, JCRC has greatly expanded its HIV treatment sites and laboratory services beyond its referral center and laboratory in Kampala. Currently JCRC operates five regional Centers of Excellence up country which include laboratories providing high quality laboratory services to program clients. In addition, staffs from the Centers of Excellence laboratories and from JCRC's Kampala referral laboratory provide technical support and training to adjacent Ministry of Health regional hospital laboratories and to smaller laboratories at district level TREAT care and treatment sites.

In the fight against HIV AIDS, Professor Peter Mugyenyi, JCRC Executive Director, has emphatically said: "…Laboratories are critical for the quality and safety of the TREAT Programme. Without laboratories it would be impossible to ensure sustainability of the [TREAT] programme as it defines best practices and delays emergence of resistance."

JCRC has expanded rapidly. This technical support will provide continued support to the JCRC Laboratory Management team in Kampala to strengthen different management systems identified as weak in a three day laboratory management assessment in workshop in April 2006 and support their growing network. JCRC Kampala and LMS will also continue to work with laboratory management teams at regional Centers of Excellence and laboratories at TREAT district-level sites. LMS and JCRC will work collaboratively with the Ministry's Central Public Health Laboratory, CDC, AMREF and other national and USG partners. This technical support falls under PEPFAR's Organization Capacity Building area of emphasis which is designed to strengthen the ability of key local institutions to implement HIV/AIDS programs efficiently with diminishing reliance, over time, on external technical assistance.

The work in COP07 will build on the work that the MSH's Management and Leadership Program undertook with JCRC in the period October 2004-September 2005 with funding from the President's Emergency Fund for AIDs Relief (PEPFAR). From October 2004 to September 2005, MSH and JCRC jointly conducted the first Laboratory Performance Improvement Program focused on strengthening the management capacity of multi disciplinary laboratory management teams from MOH/JCRC Mbale, MOH/JCRC Fort Portal and JCRC's Treat Program at the central level. Twenty five people at from the Fort Portal and Mbale Regional Labs and JCRC TREAT Program (central and Mbale and Fort Portal) were trained. Program components included management and leadership workshops for improving laboratory performance; baseline and on-going laboratory assessments to monitor performance; implementation of an action plan to improve performance; on-site support and problem solving facilitated by the JCRC laboratory coordinator and the MSH laboratory specialist and coordination and consultation with other stakeholders working in laboratory strengthening in Uganda.

With support from MSH, JCRC has begun to improve the efficient and effective management of inputs (staff, supplies, equipment, infrastructure, etc.) and processes at JCRC up country laboratories and regional MOH facilities. Further support is needed. These program refinements will build the capacity of the following laboratories: the central JCRC laboratory, the labs in the 5 Centres of Excellence, labs at the TREAT sites and labs at MOH Regional Hospitals. It is anticipated that at minimum 100 people in lab teams will strengthen their management capacity.

Improved quality and management of laboratories will contribute to two overall Emergency Plan results in Uganda: increased access to voluntary counseling and testing services, particularly among underserved and high risk populations and the increased availability of care and necessary testing services for people on ART. This activity also contributes substantively to Uganda's National HIV AIDS Strategy.

The activity will work with JCRC to ensure there are adequate networks and linkages between JCRC Kampala, the Centers of Excellence and TREAT sites at the district level as well as with MOH facilities.

The Local Organization Capacity Development activities with JCRC in Uganda relate to other activities such as SCMS, the CPHL and CDC support.