Jamaica’s Paediatric, Perinatal and Adolescent HIV/AIDS (JaPPAAIDS)Programme

Who we are

The Jamaica Perinatal, Paediatric and Adolescent HIV/ AIDS Programme (JaPPAAIDS) (formerly KPAIDS) is a collaborative clinical research team between the University of the West Indies and the Ministry of Health that continues to work through a legal memorandum of understanding which began in 2002. This program aims to primarily reduce mother to child transmission of HIV and create and implement a protocol driven approach to care for HIV infected mothers, babies, children and adolescents. The team utilized a five point strategy to achieve these goals.

  1. Provide leadership, mentoring and training to the health care team
  2. Develop and implement a unified programme for pMTCT of HIV and the care of mothers
  3. Develop and implement a unified programme for the treatment and care of HIV exposed infants and HIV infected infants, children and adolescents
  4. Build research capacity and implement new strategies based on research outcomes
  5. Expand coverage of the programme islandwide, collaborating internationally.

Since mid 2009, this team has been mandated to lead Jamaica’s Programme for the Prevention, Treatment and Care of HIV/AIDS in Pregnant Women, Infants, Children and Young People and is now in effect in 10 pMTCT sites and 12 pediatric centers, in Jamaica. They include Victoria Jubilee Maternity Hospital, Comprehensive Health Centre, University Hospital of the West Indies, Spanish Town Hospital, Bustamante Hospital for Children, May Pen Hospital, Mandeville Regional Hospital, Black River Public General Hospital, St Ann’s Bay Hospital, Savanna-La-Mar Public General Hospital and Cornwall Regional Hospital, Morant Bay Health Centre, Port Maria Hospital and Princess Margaret Hospital.


What we do

The programme focuses on women (perinatal), the children (paediatric) and the youth (adolescents). This island-wide programme involves teaching, clinical patient care, operational research as well as community outreach and public service.

  • The treatment and care of the mothers and children (babies) is being provided by the general health staff at the island’s hospitals and clinics, assisted by the programme director as well as a specially hired and trained programme coordinator working with ten nurse managers, a psychologist, data manager, two data entry clerks and an administrator.
  • The team is involved in advocacy to improve the quality of care for women, children and youth and destigmatise HIV/ AIDS in the community.
  • This team contributes information about the patients and the programme to an island-wide database. The information in the database remains confidential and is used for reporting purposes, to track the outcomes of interventions and also for outcomes based research.
  • The team has organised regional trainings on several occasions to provide updates to the health care team island wide on changes in HIV management.



Over five years, the successes have been:

  • a fall in the number of babies getting HIV from their mothers, from 30% to less than 2%, islandwide
  • significantly fewer mothers, children and babies are getting sick, or dying from HIV infections and AIDS
  • revision of the national guidelines for preventing vertical transmission of HIV/AIDS
  • leadership and training of the healthcare team to prevent mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS
  • island-wide roll out of a method for diagnosis of HIV infection in babies by the age of 4 months
  • research publications (hyperlink to research publications) and international conference presentations documenting aspects of the Perinatal, Paediatric and Adolescent HIV cohort
  • Successful partnerships with the health care team island wide, Ministry of Health as well as multiple agencies, locally and internationally for the benefit of women, children and youth. 


Funding Partners:

Current funding for the program is a grant to the UWI from Jamaica’s National Health Fund. In the past the project generated funding from other international partners through the UWI for project implementation, including the Elizabeth Glaser Paediatric AIDS Foundation, Global Fund, US National Institutes of Health, US National Institutes of Child Health and Human Development, University of Massachusetts, the Pfizer Foundation amongst several other organizations. 

Contact JaPPAIDS

Jamaica’s Pediatric, Perinatal and Adolescent HIV/AIDS Programme
Vaccines Infectious Diseases Center
University Hospital of the West Indies
Department of Child Health (Pediatrics), Kingston, Jamaica
Telephone: (876) 927-2095, (876) 977-6637, (876) 977-3953, Fax: (876) 977-5784
Email: vidc@uwimona.edu.jm