HIV/AIDS: During the decade of 90s, HIV/AIDS was exploding in US, Africa and Asia including in India. India was seen as one of the major centers of HIV/AIDS epidemic. IHO in collaboration with Harvard Medical School, World Bank, and 25 other global health organizations, took upon this as a challenge and made great contributions towards the prevention of HIV/AIDS.
One of the most successful achievements was the establishment of “REGIONAL AIDS TRAINING CENTER AND NETWORKING PROGRAM” (RATNEI) which became a model of HIV prevention in the world. I t provided capacity development for health workers at all levels from all countries in South Asia and globally. RATNEI is the flagship program of IHO which trains health professionals, community health workers, and local villagers in HIV/AIDS diagnosis and prevention techniques. RATNEI trains people on all levels in the region to promote awareness and understanding of HIVAIDS and enable capacity building with the hopes this information will be disseminated from our trainees to other professionals, health workers, and villagers. The main goal of the projects are to mitigate the impact that HIV/AIDS may have in the region by training and educating appropriately.
In 1998, IHO initiated an HIV education and prevention project among the high-risk population associated with the trucking and highway industries in India and Nepal. The project site is located at a truck stop on National Highway 2 in Gaya, i one of the southern districts of the state of Bihar. National Highway 2 is an important road link between Delhi and Calcutta. Long-distance truck drivers gather in great numbers at the truck stop to obtain highway support services and fuel, and to socialize with peers and commercial sex workers. The education workers provide individual, group, and community level education on STDs and HIV/AIDS. Services include free distribution of educational materials and free distribution of condoms along with training in their correct use. Persons who attend the center have the opportunity to receive testing and STD case management, HIV counseling and education and, if necessary, referral to the District Level Hospital.
IHO provides continued capacity development for all communicable infectious diseases in developing countries.