The target groups of the programme are those who are most at risk and any person wishing to volunteer for a free and anonymous HIV / AIDS screening test: pregnant women, blood donors, any patient showing suspicious signs of having or previously having one of these three diseases and the healthcare staff involved in the programme (in Mali and in neighboring countries).
The main aims of the programme are to:
create a network of laboratories by reinforcing existing structures throughout the country;
incorporate the project into a overall healthcare approach;
set up a system of reliable and accurate data collection in the domain of biological diagnostics;
distribute the results and the methodology of the projects and to put in place its terms for progression and durability.
Currently 73 laboratories of the network have been equipped with analytical and environmental equipment, small equipment and consumable resources. A further allocation of equipment, consumable resources and reagents, is anticipated at the end of 2009. In total 82 laboratories are involved in the programme.
More than 350 healthcare professionals have been trained since the launch of the programme in 2005 in the form of:
training qualifications (quality assurance, HIV / AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria);
BAMS training (Bachelor of Biological and Applied Medical Sciences);
practical job training at the Rodolphe Mérieux Laboratory in Bamako.
The Guide for Good Methods and Execution in Biological Analysis (GBEA) has been drawn up and established by the Ministry of Health, on 2 April 2009, with a view to standardize all practices, and is to be used in all laboratories of biomedical analysis in Mali.
An External Evaluation Quality Department within the National Institute of Public Health Research (INRSP) was launched in September 2009. This laboratory allows the evaluation of results and the guarantee of quality by all laboratories of medical analysis in Mali.
An awareness campaign has been launched by Action BioMali in Mali and in sub regions in order to inform target groups of the network of laboratories.