Q.29 What training or other 'capacity' is needed to support the new recommendations re. breastfeeding and ARVs?
All staff should know about and be able to support the new national recommendations, including explaining the rationale for the changes and which interventions will be provided to HIV-infected pregnant women and mothers. Wherever possible, at least one health worker in each facility where MCH services are provided should be trained in infant and young child feeding counselling, for example through the Infant and young child feeding counselling: An integrated course.
This course is available at least at the national level in the countries most affected by HIV, and will be updated to incorporate the new guidelines. The trained worker can serve as a resource for the other health workers and peer counsellors in their facility while training is scaled up. Training for maternity hospital staff in the course designed for the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative is also recommended.
Staff should also be trained on which ARV intervention will be recommended nationally, the drug doses for infants at different ages (for Option A), timing for clinic visits to obtain ARVs, documentation of ARV dispensing and monitoring of infant feeding practices.