Over the past 8 months, a group of sex workers, researchers and development managers, including GSHI Director Dr. Kate Shannon, met in Ghana to develop the Sex Work and HIV Implementation Tool (SWIT). The tool, titled 'Implementing Comprehensive HIV/STI Programmes with Sex Workers: Practical Approaches from Collaborative Interventions' offers practical advice to public health officials, managers of HIV/STI programmes, NGOs, health workers, and hopefully international funding agencies, health policy-makers and advocates, on how best to implement HIV and STI programmes for and with sex workers.
The SWIT was supported by the World Health Organization, the United Nations Population Fund, the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS and the Global Network of Sex Work Projects, and provides examples of good practice from around the world. It covers topics including approaches and princples to building programmes that are led by the sex worker community; how to implement crucial health care interventions for HIV preventions, treatment and care; and suggestions on how to manage programmes and build capacity of sex worker organizations.
The SWIT is available online now in English, and soon will be available in Spanish and French. Launch events for the SWIT are planned for the International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP) taking place in Bangkok, Thailand in November 2013, and at the International Conference on AIDS and STIs in Africa (ICASA) in Cape Town, South Africa in December 2013.