Zaza lives in the coastal city of Batumi, Georgia, where he is a social worker at Imedi Harm Reduction Site (HRS).
In many countries, including Georgia, drug use is criminalized, making it unlikely that people will access health services. To reach potential patients, Zaza does outreach work in his community using this lab-in-a-van. Along with a lab specialist, he conducts mobile counselling and screening for hepatitis C virus (HCV) and other infectious diseases. People who screen positive are invited to Imedi HRS for a confirmatory test.
By 2030, WHO aims for 90% of people with HCV globally to know their status – but today only 20% have been diagnosed. Without community outreach like Zaza’s, the WHO target will not be reached.