HIV and AIDS in Humanitarian Action

CCC Commitments and Benchmarks

Commitments Benchmarks
Commitment 1

Children, young people and women have access to information regarding prevention, care and treatment.

Policy  |  Tools
Benchmark 1

90% of affected population is reached and provided with information on prevention, care and treatment.

Commitment 2

Children, young people and women access HIV and AIDS prevention, care and treatment during crisis.

Policy  |  Tools
Benchmark 2

80% of emergency-affected population has access to relevant HIV and AIDS prevention, care and treatment services, e.g., post-rape care including post-exposure prophylaxis, sexually transmitted infection treatment, prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) and antiretroviral treatment (ART).

Commitment 3

Prevention, care and treatment services for children, young people and women are continued.

Policy  |  Tools
Benchmark 3

80% of emergency-affected population previously on HIV-related care and treatment continue to receive antiretrovirals for PMTCT, and children and young people on ART continue receiving treatment.

Technical Justification

HIV and humanitarian situations overlap and interact worldwide. Because HIV infection is irreversible, it is critical that adequate preventive measures be undertaken in all situations, including humanitarian situations. The implementation of care and treatment initiatives for HIV and AIDS, including meeting adherence and compliance requirements, has been demonstrated to be practically feasible, and reduction in mortality is well documented.

Programme Action

  • Preparedness
  • Response
  • Early Recovery


  • Develop context-specific HIV information material, identify and involve existing community networks, and develop partnerships between clusters to ensure mainstreaming of HIV in sector responses.
  • Agree with partners on mechanisms to reach and track children and women who may lose access to HIV-related essential services, and prepare for rapid provision of a buffer supply of medication.
  • Ensure that all women enrolled in prevention of PMTCT services and all community members using ART, including children, have record cards detailing treatment.


  • Ensure coverage of HIV in health-sector initiatives for community health-promotion campaigns, as well as in education-sector initiatives.
  • Track patients who were previously accessing PMTCT and ART, and refer them to health facilities for care, including for nutrition support and infant-feeding counselling and support.
  • Inform children and mothers about where to access basic health and support services, including access to condoms, the treatment of sexually transmitted infections, prophylaxis and treatment of opportunistic infections, receipt of cotrimoxazole, continuation of PMTCT and ARV services, fulfilment of nutritional needs, and psychosocial support activities for children and caregivers.
  • Ensure continued access for patients to PMTCT and ART drugs, care and support services, including support and counselling on infant feeding options, subsequent support for HIV-positive mothers - according to the acceptable, feasible, affordable, sustainable and safe (AFASS) criteria and code; management of acute malnutrition; and provision of ARV prophylaxis and cotrimoxazole.
  • Ensure provision of psychosocial support for survivors of rape, including children.
  • Identify and transmit supply inputs to Supply and Logistics.

Early Recovery

  • Build and support existing peer networks, and support the expansion and of peer education networks.
  • Engage children, women and people living with HIV in developing communications plans and messages.
  • Begin re-establishing prevention, care and treatment services that were affected by crisis, and ensure confidentiality.
  • Initiate a gap analysis of local and national capacities, and ensure integration of capacity strengthening in HIV and AIDS in early recovery and transition plans, with a focus on risk reduction.

Guidelines and Tools

Checklist for Determining HIV Status for Children 0-59 Months with Severe Acute Malnutrition, UNICEF, 2015
MTCT in Humanitarian Settings Part 1: Lessons Learned and Recommendations, UNICEF, 2015
PMTCT In Humanitarian Settings Part II: Implementation Guide, UNICEF, 2015
Severe Acute Malnutrition Programme Guide, UNICEF, 2015
HIV in Humanitarian Settings Contingency Planning, UNICEF, Save the Children, 2014
Guidelines for the Delivery of Antiretroviral Therapy to Migrants and Crisis-Affected Persons in Sub-Saharan Africa, UNICEF, 2014
Strengthening National Responses to HIV and Adolescents in Emergency Situations: Lessons Learned from Cote d'Ivoire and Haiti, UNICEF, Irish Aid, UNAIDS, 2013
UNICEF's Lessons Learned for HIV Programming: 2013 Floods in Gaza Province, Mozambique, UNICEF, 2013
Assessment of HIV in Internally Displaced Situations, Interagency Task Team for HIV in Emergencies, 2013
Guidelines for Child Friendly Spaces in Emergencies, Child Protection, UNICEF, 2011
SPHERE Handbook 2011, Health and WASH, SPHERE, 2011
WHO Guidelines on HIV and Infant Feeding, Nutrition, WHO, 2010
Guidance on Infant Feeding and HIV in the Context of Refugees and Displaced Populations, Nutrition, UNHCR, 2009
IASC Guidelines for GBV Interventions in Humanitarian Settings, Child Protection, IASC, 2005
INEE Minimum Standards for Education in Emergencies, Chronic Crises and Early Reconstruction, Education, INEE, 2004
Practical Guide to Developing Child Friendly Spaces, Child Protection, UNICEF
Child Protection in Emergencies Training Modules, Child Protection, UNICEF
INEE Toolkit, Education, INEE
Inter-Agency Emergency Health Kit, Health and WASH (forthcoming), UNICEF