This case traces the development of Botswana’s prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT) program, from its inception as a pilot program in 1999 through its national expansion in 2002 and its struggle to improve outcomes and integrate with broader maternal and child care services through 2008. After providing some background on Botswana, its demographics and health situation, including HIV/AIDS and that national response, the case provides an overview of PMTCT—a critical challenge in global health—and describes the inception of the PMTCT program in Botswana. Readers see the challenges the program faced upon the initial scale-up and explore the key efforts and advances in process and policy that help the country overcome them and become a well known PMTCT success story. The case ends with the program wrestling with a relatively small group of women and their infants who fell through the cracks in the program and several holes in the health system that are preventing the program from eradicating infant HIV completely and tracking its progress.
Teaching Note available through Harvard Business Publishing.
PMTCT Programme vehicle. Credit: Erin Sullivan.
Learning Objectives: To understand the role of a robust strategy, including experimentation, adoption, process improvement, and policy in global health implementation and national scale-up strategies.
Keywords: Health care policy, Horizontal programming, HIV prevention, Translation of research into practice