Duration: 2014 – 2019

Budget (Kyrgyzstan): $1,188, 552

Activity Locations: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan

Implementing Partner: AIDS Foundation East-West

The project works to prevent HIV among key populations in detention and post-detention settings by increasing access to quality HIV-related services for people who inject drugs (PWID) and people living with HIV (PLHIV) in accordance with the UNAIDS 90-90-90 goal.


The project employs a comprehensive approach to provide access to HIV prevention, treatment and care services for key populations in detention and post-detention settings. One of the key aspects is strengthening the Penal Medical Service, Republican AIDS Center and community-based non-governmental organizations and improving coordination among them so that more people test for HIV, receive counseling, participate in harm reduction programs and other HIV related activities.

The project supports so called peer counselors and peer navigators (trained prisoners – PWID and PLHIV), to provide HIV-related services in six prison facilities. They help to convince people who inject drugs to voluntarily test for HIV, provide counseling or motivate prisoners to change risky behavior. Another objective is starting anti-retroviral therapy on time and retaining patients on treatment to make their viral load is suppressed. The clients receive psychological and social support at all stages. Soon-to-be-released prisoners receive transitional client management support to avoid interruption of treatment.


  • In 2014 and 2015 the project provided counseling and mini-trainings on HIV prevention to 4895 prisoners in all closed type prison facilities of Kyrgyzstan.
  • In 2016, more than 890 prisoners who inject drugs took HIV tests, while 300 prisoners with HIV received counseling on adherence to treatment. Prisoners with HIV were also screened for TB symp-toms.
  • After training on basics of HIV prevention, harm reduction and legal regulations, more than 550 non-medical prison officers are engaged in HIV preventive activities inside prison facilities.
  • 120 doctors and healthcare specialists of the Penal System learned about clinical protocols on HIV treatment and testing, sexually transmitted infections, opioid substitution therapy. This will help to provide comprehensive medical and social support to people living with HIV.
  • 69 primary healthcare medical specialists took part in special training to learn more about HIV prevention, treatment and decreasing stigma against people living with HIV, so that they are more sensitive to the needs of former prisoners.
  • Project-supported training enabled more than 90 social workers and peer consultants from NGOs to provide client management services, motivate prisoners who inject drugs to take HIV test and support peer navigators movement in pilot prisons.
  • The project facilitated the process of development and approval of two key documents that operationalize implementation of harm reduction programs (e.g. syringe exchange, drug substitution) and treatment of sexually transmitted infections in prisons.