AIDS Foundation East West

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Institutionalisation of Health Promotion and HIV Prevention in the Educational System of the Ukraine State Department of Corrections


MATRA Programme funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands

Implemented by:

AIDS Foundation East-West (AFEW)


Mainline Foundation (The Netherlands)
Ukrainian State Department of Corrections 

Project duration:

1 July 2007—1 August 2011

Additional Information


'Health Protection in the Ukraine State Department of Corrections' - Manual for Prison Staff (pdf, 846KB, 2009)

Poster on Hepatitis (pdf, 163KB, 2009)

Poster on Tuberculosis (pdf, 64KB, 2009)

Poster on Drugs (pdf, 128KB, 2009)

Poster on Tuberculosis Prevention (pdf, 77KB, 2009)

Poster on Tuberculosis Transmission (pdf, 241KB, 2009)

Poster on Sexually Transmitted Diseases (pdf, 119KB, 2009)

Poster on the Control of Infectious Diseases (pdf, 132KB, 2009)

Poster with Basic Facts about HIV and AIDS  (pdf, 589KB, 2009)

Poster on Diagnosis of HIV (pdf, 390KB, 2009)

Poster on HIV Transmission (pdf, 131KB, 2009)

Poster on HIV Prevention in the Workplace (pdf, 106KB, 2009)

Poster on Anti-Retroviral Therapy (pdf, 165KB, 2009)

Poster on Treatment Adherence (pdf, 124KB, 2009)

Photo of Adriann Backer

Ukraine was the first European country to reach a 1% adult HIV prevalence rate and is recognised as the hardest hit country in the region. As of January 2010, 161 119 individuals were registered as living with HIV in Ukraine, with some estimates suggesting that as many as 440 000 Ukrainians have already been infected. 

In April 2009, 5,283 HIV-infected individuals were detained in different types of correctional facilities in Ukraine. As of June 2010, there were about 2 000 TB-infected and 600 HIV-infected individuals detained by the Ukrainian police authorities in the pre-trial detention centers (SIZO). Yet, the real number of HIV-infected inmates in Ukraine is unknown as HIV testing is a voluntary procedure. The State Penal Service reports that 118 inmates became infected with tuberculosis, 95 died from the disease and 133 died from HIV/TB co-infection in 2009.

Due to its vast experience in the prison systems in the Russian Federation and Central Asia, AFEW expanded its focus on prisons and in 2007 initiated activities in the Ukrainian penal system under its Matra-funded project Institutionalisation of Health Promotion and HIV Prevention in the Educational System of the Ukraine State Department of Corrections. At the request of the State Department of Corrections in Ukraine, AFEW will share its successes from other countries, and will develop and/or adapt training curricula for prison officials and staff for use in the country’s penal system and training centres.

The aim of this project was to contribute to the implementation of a comprehensive and sustained nationwide HIV policy through the development and institutionalisation of health promotion and HIV prevention training strategies that are specific to the prison system.

As such, AFEW is carried out the following project activities:

  • Development of a health promotion and HIV prevention, treatment, care and support training curricula for medical specialists, psychologists, non-medical prison staff, teaching staff and prison inmates, in close consultation with the Department of Corrections; 
  • Establishment of a National Resource & Training Centre within the structure of the State Department of Corrections; 
  • Peer trainers within the State Department of Corrections from the Resource & Training Centre receive introductory training on the developed curricula enabling them to train additional staff and peers; 
  • Training manuals and materials on HIV prevention and health promotion are being developed, printed and distributed to prison staff and inmates alike.

    All of these activities were designed to firmly plant international best-practice HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services within the prison system in Ukraine in order to prevent the further spread of HIV and to promote healthy choices among prisoners and prison staff alike. 

    The project achieved the following

    • A training programme was developed and incorporated into the state department’s obligatory training programme for all prison staff; 
    • A resource centre on the premises of the Correctional Department was established and equipped; 
    • An educational manual ‘Health Promotion in the State Department of Corrections’ was developed together with prison staff. It is accompanied by a series of posters, CDs with presentations for use during training sessions and an anthology of materials that can be used in the prevention education of prisoners. All correctional facilities in Ukraine have been equipped with these materials; 
    • A national team of 27 trainers is now qualified to conduct training of prison staff on issues such as health promotion in prisons and the prevention of HIV, STIs and tuberculosis. Some members of the team took part in study-tour to Amsterdam in October, 2008;
    • Local teams of trainers are now based in four regional centres – Zaporozhye, Lugansk, Odessa and Ternopil. To date, 84 trainers have attended preparatory courses and 68 people have received training certificates;
    • Across all regions, 140 specialists were trained to conduct educational sessions for other personnel; 
    • Altogether, 281 employees of the State Department of Corrections participated in the project.

    In addition, AFEW staff have promoted the project at international and national events. The project was initially presented at the 2nd National Penitentiary System Conference held in December, 2007. Information about the project was also published in the abstract books for the 2nd Eastern Europe and Central Asian AIDS Conference, which was held in Moscow in May 2008; Central Asian HIV/TB Conference, which took place in Kyrgyzstan in August 2009; and for the 3rd Eastern European and Central Asian AIDS Conference (EECAAC), held in Moscow in October 2009.

    Furthermore, AFEW Project Manager Natalia Moyseeva gave a presentation on ‘Institutionalisation of the prevention of socially significant diseases in the Ukraine State Department of Corrections’ at the International Conference on Prison Health Protection in October 2009 in Madrid  and submitted an electronic presentation to the XVIII International AIDS Conference in Vienna in July 2010.

    Last update: 10/07/2009