Implementing and using viral load testing : practical tools

mplemented since March 2013 in four African countries (Burundi, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire and Guinea) to improve the monitoring of people living with HIV by increasing access to viral load tests, the OPP-ERA project has been extended to 2019 in the 4 countries to develop the use of  Open and Polyvalent Platforms (OPP) solution :  innovative molecular biology techniques that allow  to measure  HIV viral load  as well as  to diagnose (with the same technical platform) other Infectious diseases.

OPP-ERA 2nd phase started on the 1st of August,  2016 in the  4 beneficiary countries  and its purpose is to  carry out 218 000 HIV viral load tests by 2019;  to demonstrate the polyvalence  of the Open Platforms for infants early  HIV diagnosis and to diagnose other diseases : tuberculosis and hepatitis B as well as  increasing  the number of Open Platforms from seven (phase 1) to fourteen in phase 2 in the four countries.

In Cameroon, OPP-ERA phase 1 demonstrated the functioning of OPP and their complementarity with other diagnostic platforms and tools of the 2 laboratories equipped by the project at the Douala Laquintinie Hospital and at  Garoua Pasteur Center  district .

More than 16,800 HIV viral load tests were performed between August 2014 and December 2016.

OPP-ERA Phase 2 is expected to:

  • Perform more than 53,000 HIV viral load tests from 2016 to 2019 through 4 open platforms
  • Diagnose and monitor pathologies other than HIV such as hepatitis B, tuberculosis thanks to the polyvalence of open platforms;
  •  Install  two new platforms at Yaoundé Central Hospital and Bertoua Regional Hospital;
  • Train health human resources involved in the implementation of the project;

OPP-ERA Project
Funded by UNITAID, OPP-ERA project is co-financed and implemented by a consortium of French partners: Solthis (Solidarité Therapeutique et Initiatives pour la Santé), leader and responsible for the project implementation in Guinea; ANRS (France Research North & South AIDS-HIV Hepatitis), responsible for scientific direction and valorization of the project results; Expertise France responsible for implementation of the project in Côte d’Ivoire and Cameroon; and Sidaction in charge of the project  in Burundi.

More information about UNAIDS fight against HIV/AIDS

Towards access to HIV viral load testing for all  in Cameroon: the OPP-ERA project launches its second phase phase of activities

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50 HIV health-care workers in Conakry trained on the usefulness and interpretation of viral load tests’ results