ARS Program accepted for Presentation in Int’l Conf in Bangkok

Armenian Relief Society, Inc.

Armenian Relief Society, Inc. Phone: 617-926-589
Central Office Fax: 617-926-4855
80 Bigelow Avenue E-mail: [email protected]
Watertown, MA 02472 Contact Person: Hamesd Beugekian

P r e s s R e l e a s e

The International Board of Directors of the Armenian Relief Society,
Inc. (ARS) is pleased to announce that the results of “The HIV
Education and Assessment Project in Armenia” have been accepted for
poster presentation at the 15th International AIDS Conference in
Bangkok, Thailand from July 11-16, 2004.

The HIV Education and Assessment Project was conducted by the ARS, in
collaboration with the University of Massachusetts, Worcester at the
ARS Mother-Child Clinic in Akhourian, Armenia. This needs assessment,
completed in September 2002, was sponsored by the ARS, and focused on
identifying major health issues, HIV knowledge, HIV education
strategies that would work, and barriers to HIV prevention education.

A subsequent collaborative effort with the University of
Massachusetts, “The HIV/AIDS Education and Prevention Project,” funded
by a grant from the World AIDS Foundation, emerged directly from the
results of this needs assessment.

Authors include Dr. Carol Bova, Assistant Professor of Nursing and
Medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School; Dr. Sevak
Avagyan, Director of the ARS Mother-Child Clinic; Carol Jaffarian,
Nurse Manager/Nurse Practitioner of the HIV Clinic at U Mass Memorial
Healthcare, and member ofthe ARS; Dr. Mkhitar Mkhitaryan, Executive
Director of the ARS Mother-Child Clinic; and Dr. Ann Williams,
Professor of Nursing at the Yale University School of Nursing.

Built in the region of Armenia devastated by the 1988 earthquake, the
ARS Mother-Child Clinic, the first licensed and registered
privately-owned medical facility in Armenia, became operational in May
1997. Providing the 22,000 strong population of Akhourian and six
adjacent villages with free medical care and treatment, more than
40,000 women and children have received care at the Clinic since its
inception; and more than 450 children have been born to mothers
followed in this clinic. In September 2003, the ARS celebrated the
ground-breaking of a Birthing Center at the Clinic.

Founded in 1910 as an independent, non-sectarian, non-governmental
organization (NGO), serving the humanitarian, social, and educational
needsof Armenians, the ARS has affiliate entities in 24 countries and
a membership of approximately 18,000. An NGO on the roster in
consultative status with theEconomic and Social Council of the United
Nations, the ARS is a 501© (3) charitable, tax-exempt organization.