Coordinating key stakeholders to ensure smooth transition of new products
In addition to collaborating with the Ministry of Health and donors, it is equally important to engage relevant partners, including procurement agencies, local implementing partners, civil society, and community representatives.
Stakeholder Engagement Checklist
Engage key Ministry of Health decision makers, partners, and opinion leaders to discuss and agree on product introduction priorities and phase-in strategies
Convene key stakeholders through national technical working groups to decide on national guidelines, priority populations, and rollout strategies
Involve key stakeholders in the rollout planning process and define clear roles and responsibilities to leverage the skills, expertise, and resources of all involved
Ensure clear communication between program managers, procurement partners, and National Drug Regulatory Authorities (NDRAs) on national product introduction plans to guide inclusion in national forecasts and NDRA priorities
Coordinate with procurement partners to ensure smooth commodity procurement, consumption, and monitoring for supply continuity
Leverage partners to conduct clinical trainings, facilitate mentorship, and guide accurate product use
Develop community engagement strategies to support treatment literacy and demand for optimal products
Ensure community groups are engaged throughout product introduction to help inform the rollout process and communication strategies
Consider how engagement with the media could help to disseminate key messaging around new product availability and drive demand
Stakeholder Engagement Resources
Engaging with civil society organizations, community representatives, and national networks of PLHIV is critical for empowering people and expanding access to information on new ARVs. This in turn generates demand for optimal products by having a well-informed community. Furthermore, engaging communities in the initial stages of product introduction helps promote an effective implementation of new product rollout plans. While many groups are involved in community engagement around treatment optimization, the efforts of three key groups – AfroCAB, HIV i-Base, and the Optimal CAB – are described in more detail below.
CHAI Stakeholder Mapping for Treatment Optimization
This tool is helpful for identifying the key stakeholders involved in new product introduction. This tool encourages users to think through all the key stakeholders who are either actively involved in processes required for product introduction, or who could be key decision makers or otherwise affected by the process. The tool helps the user to map what role is required of each stakeholder and to define a communication strategy for each key stakeholder. The tool also allows stakeholder coordinators to identify and track priority activities for key stakeholder engagement.
Optimal Community Advisory Board
Through the CHAI-Unitaid Optimal Project, which aims to accelerate access to better HIV treatment options, CHAI established the Optimal Community Advisory Board (CAB) with the goal of fostering engagement with civil society partners to co-develop product adoption strategies and improve understanding of and demand for new ARVs among PLHIV. The CAB includes representatives from a range of global and national PLHIV community and advocacy organizations. The CAB provides strategic direction and leadership to strengthen community engagement in project implementation, to foster demand generation, and to ensure that the CHAI-Unitaid project as a whole supports and complements the activities of the global HIV treatment community. Key resources developed by the CAB are highlighted below.
African Community Advisory Board and
Other Community Resources
The African Community Advisory Board (AfroCAB) is a network of HIV treatment advocates across Africa focused on providing a platform for people living with HIV to engage on key issues. Specifically, AfroCAB focuses on influencing new product development and sharing experiences on treatment optimization, product rollout, and scale-up.
The International Treatment Preparedness Coalition's Advocacy for Community Treatment (ACT) Toolkit was developed to support communities to realize their rights to optimal HIV treatment.
HIV i-Base is a treatment activist group committed to providing timely and up-to-date information about HIV treatment to community members and healthcare professionals. HIV i-Base produces informative patient resources, including information about new ARVs, the latest clinical trials, and treatment for special populations. HIV i-Base makes these resources available for adaption for use in local contexts, upon request. These resources are produced by and with the involvement of HIV positive individuals and are reviewed by a medical advisory group.
USAID HIV Product Optimization Groups and Partnerships
USAID's Market Shaping Primer looks to further the conversation around market shaping in global health by taking an in-depth look at the state of practice. Whether by better leveraging private sector participation in manufacturing and delivery, or improving value for money in the global procurement of commodities, the Primer explores the opportunities for market shaping to improve the way USAID and other donors/procurers maximize health impact.
USAID’s Center for Accelerating Innovation and Impact applies private sector approaches to the development, introduction, and scale-up of health interventions. The Center's Idea to Impact Guide describes the Center's approach to introducing and scaling new global health innovations.
Proactive communication to media outlets with an interest in public health or developments in the national treatment program can support dissemination of accurate messaging on new products.
An example of successful media engagement to disseminate information about new product rollout includes recent media coverage on pediatric dolutegravir.