Implementation and Operational Research: An Integrated and Comprehensive Service Delivery Model to Improve Pediatric and Maternal HIV Care in Rural Africa.
ABSTRACT: Strategies to improve HIV diagnosis and linkage into care, antiretroviral treatment coverage, and treatment outcomes of mothers and children are urgently needed in sub-Saharan Africa.From December 2012, we implemented an intervention package to improve prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) and pediatric HIV care in our rural Tanzanian clinic, consisting of: (1) creation of a PMTCT and pediatric unit integrated within the reproductive and child health clinic; (2) implementation of electronic medical records; (3) provider-initiated HIV testing and counseling in the hospital wards; and (4) early infant diagnosis test performed locally. To assess the impact of this strategy, clinical characteristics and outcomes were compared between the period before (2008-2012) and during/after the implementation (2013-2014).After the intervention, the number of mothers and children enrolled into care almost doubled. Compared with the pre-intervention period (2008-2012), in 2013-2014, children presented lower CD4% (16 vs. 16.8, P = 0.08) and more advanced disease (World Health Organization stage 3/4 72% vs. 35%, P < 0.001). The antiretroviral treatment coverage rose from 80% to 98% (P < 0.001), the lost-to-follow-up rate decreased from 20% to 11% (P = 0.002), and mortality ascertainment improved. During 2013-2014, 261 HIV-exposed infants were enrolled, and the early mother-to-child transmission rate among mother-infant pairs accessing PMTCT was 2%.This strategy resulted in an increased number of mothers and children diagnosed and linked into care, a higher detection of children with AIDS, universal treatment coverage, lower loss to follow-up, and an early mother-to-child transmission rate below the threshold of elimination. This study documents a feasible and scalable model for family-centered HIV care in sub-Saharan Africa.
Project description:The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) remains a leading cause of maternal morbidity and mortality in Sub-Saharan Africa. Prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) has proven an effective strategy to end paediatric infections and ensure HIV-infected mothers access treatment. Based on cross-sectional data collected from June 2008 to May 2013, we assessed changes in HIV prevalence, risk factors for HIV, provision of PMTCT antiretroviral treatment (ART), and the association between HIV infection, birth outcomes and maternal characteristics at the Simão Mendes National Hospital, Guinea-Bissau's largest maternity ward. Among 24,107 women, the HIV prevalence was 3.3% for HIV-1, 0.8% for HIV-2 and 0.9% for HIV-1/2. A significant decline in HIV-1, HIV-2, and HIV-1/2 prevalence was observed over time. HIV infection was associated with age and ethnicity. A total of 85% of HIV-infected women received ART as part of PMTCT, yet overall treatment coverage during labour and delivery declined significantly for both mothers and infants. Twenty-two percent of infants did not receive treatment, and 67% of HIV-2-infected mothers and 77% of their infants received ineffective non-nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitors for PMTCT. Maternal HIV was associated with low birth weight but not stillbirth. Inadequate continuity of care and ART coverage present challenges to optimal PMTCT in Guinea-Bissau.
Project description:Globally, there are 3.3 million children < 15 years of age living with HIV infection. About 95% of HIV infected children have acquired infection from their mothers. Although new pediatric HIV infection in Tanzania has declined by 48% and Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT) coverage of highly active anti-retroviral therapy (HAART) has increased to 77%, the MTCT rate remains high (15%). Poor male partner involvement in PMTCT services is one of the factors contributing to reduced effectiveness of the PMTCT and hence failure to achieve the elimination of maternal to child transmission of HIV. This study examined the predictors of male involvement in PMTCT services in Mwanza Region, Tanzania from perspectives of the mother.A cross sectional study involving selected health facilities was conducted in Mwanza urban from October 2013 through January 2014. HIV positive pregnant women attending ante-natal clinic (ANC) were interviewed using a semi structured questionnaire. Univariate analysis was used to describe the study respondents where bivariate and logistic regression was used to determine predictors of male involvement.A total of 300 HIV positive mothers attending ANC with the mean age of 27.5 + 5.6 were interviewed. Few mothers (24.7%) had their male partners involved in PMTCT. Predictors of male partner involvement in PMTCT were mothers being proactive (Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) 28.6; Confidence Interval (CI) 7-116), perceived partners knowledge on PMTCT (AOR 24.6, CI 5.9-102.8), exposure to TV/Radio announcements on PMTCT (AOR 4.6, CI 1.5-14) and married status of the mother (AOR 3.7, CI 1.5-9). Mothers who never wanted to be escorted by their male partners and busy partners were associated with reduced odds of male involvement into PMTCT (AOR 0.07, CI 0.007-0.68) and (AOR 0.46 CI 0.21-0.99) respectively. Male partner involvement was associated with 98% reduced odds of violence (Crude Odds Ratio 0.018 CI 0.002-0.14).Male partner involvement in PMTCT is still low in Mwanza Region. Proactive mothers, partner's knowledge on PMTCT and announcements from television/radio were the major facilitating factors for male involvement in PMTCT as perceived by mothers. Busy male partners and mothers who did not want to be escorted by their partners were a hindrance to male involvement in PMTCT services. These factors highlight the importance of women role in promotion of PMTCT male involvement.
Project description:BACKGROUND:By 2011, South African prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV programs had reduced perinatal HIV transmission at 6 weeks of age to 2.7%. We investigated the profile of newly diagnosed vertically infected children and their mothers to identify shortfalls in the PMTCT program. METHODS:In this operational follow-up study, fieldworkers enrolled mothers of newly diagnosed HIV-infected children up to 2 years of age at 5 major health care facilities in Johannesburg. Structured questionnaires and clinical record reviews were conducted and analyzed to describe the population and assess factors associated with PMTCT uptake. RESULTS:Two hundred eighty-nine mother-child pairs were enrolled. Timing of maternal HIV diagnosis influenced PMTCT access and feeding choices and was associated with infants' age at HIV diagnosis (7 vs. 11 vs. 31 weeks where mothers tested before, during, or after the pregnancy, respectively; P < 0.0001). Women diagnosed before pregnancy (12%) were older (median, 31 years) than those diagnosed during the index pregnancy (53%; median, 27 years). Women diagnosed after delivery (35%) were younger (median, 25 years, P < 0.0001), of lower parity, and less likely to be South African citizens. In 81 cases (29%), late maternal diagnosis precluded any PMTCT access. Where women were diagnosed during or before pregnancy, the recommended PMTCT guidelines for mother and infant were followed in 86 (61%) pairs. CONCLUSIONS:Failure to diagnose maternal HIV infection before delivery was the main reason for missing PMTCT prophylaxis and early infant testing. Timely maternal diagnosis enables PMTCT uptake, but implementation and follow-up gaps require attention to improve infant outcomes.
Project description:To identify missed opportunities in HIV prevention, diagnosis, and linkage to care, we enrolled 183 hospitalized, HIV-infected, ART-naïve Kenyan children 0-12 years from four hospitals in Nairobi and Kisumu, and reviewed prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT), hospitalization, and HIV testing history. Median age was 1.8 years (IQR?=?0.8, 4.5). Most mothers received HIV testing during pregnancy (77%). Among mothers tested, 60% and 40% reported HIV-negative and positive results, respectively; 33% of HIV-diagnosed mothers did not receive PMTCT antiretrovirals. First missed opportunities for pediatric diagnosis and linkage were due to failure to test mothers (23.1%), maternal HIV acquisition following initial negative test (45.7%), no early infant diagnosis (EID) or provider-initiated testing (PITC) (12.7%), late breastfeeding transmission (8.7%), failure to collect child HIV test results (1.2%), and no linkage to care following HIV diagnosis (8.7%). Among previously hospitalized children, 38% never received an HIV test. Strengthening initial and repeat maternal HIV testing and PITC are key interventions to prevent, detect, and treat pediatric HIV infections.
Project description:BACKGROUND: The prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) program in South Africa is now successful in ensuring HIV-free survival for most HIV-exposed children, but gaps in PMTCT coverage remain. The study objective was to identify missed opportunities for prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV using the four PMTCT stages outlined in National Guidelines. METHODS: This descriptive study enrolled HIV-exposed children who were below the age of 7 years and therefore born during the South African PMTCT era. The study site was in Gauteng, South Africa and enrolment was from June 2009 to May 2010. The clinical history was obtained through a structured caregiver interview and review of medical records and included socio-demographic data, medical history, HIV interventions, infant feeding information and HIV results. The study group was divided into the "single dose nevirapine" ("sdNVP") and "dual-therapy" (nevirapine & zidovudine) groups due to PMTCT program change in February 2008, with subsequent comparison between the groups regarding PMTCT steps during the preconception stage, antenatal care, labor and delivery and postpartum care. RESULTS: Two-hundred-and-one HIV-exposed children were enrolled: 137 (68%) children were HIV infected and 64 (32%) were HIV uninfected. All children were born between 2002 and 2009, with 78 (39%) in the "sdNVP" and 123 (61%) in the "dual-therapy" groups. The results demonstrate significant improvements in antenatal HIV testing and PMTCT enrolment, known maternal HIV diagnosis at delivery, mother-infant antiretroviral interventions, infant HIV-diagnosis and cotrimoxazole prophylaxis. Missed opportunities without improvement include pre-conceptual HIV-services and family planning, tuberculosis screening, HIV disclosure, psychosocial support and postnatal care. Not receiving consistent infant feeding messaging was the only PMTCT component that worsened over time. CONCLUSIONS: Multiple missed opportunities for optimal PMTCT were identified, which collectively increase children's risk of HIV acquisition. Although HIV-testing and antiretroviral interventions improved, all PMTCT components need to be optimized to reach the goal of total pediatric HIV elimination.
Project description:The pandemic of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) is the most severe health challenge affecting children across the world. It is estimated that more than 90% of all HIV infections in children result from Mother-to-Child Transmission (MTCT). Poor knowledge and awareness of MTCT and Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission (PMTCT) among HIV positive mothers and their babies is a major setback to the success of the PMTCT programmes.A qualitative approach and a cross-sectional design were applied in this study. The sample size of the study was 26 participants. Purposive sampling was used to select HIV infected mothers enrolled for PMTCT follow-up services and health care providers responsible for the implementation of the PMTCT programmes. In-depth interviews were conducted with fifteen HIV infected mothers at two health facilities. Two Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) were conducted with eleven health workers at the two health facilities. Focus groups comprised of six participants from Mankweng Clinic and five participants from Mankweng Gateway Clinic.The findings from the study reveal that the majority of the respondents were aware of MTCT, but lacked knowledge and understanding about how a mother can transmit HIV to her child during pregnancy, labour and breastfeeding. The majority of the participants did not understand the risk of MTCT after birth and failed to mention breastfeeding as a mode of transmission. However, most of the participants were aware that MTCT can be prevented. The respondents were aware of the importance of treatment adherence as a prevention measure to avoid MTCT.Based on these findings, a number of recommendations were made. The first is that educational and awareness programmes need to be developed or strengthened on health risks. Mass campaign media should provide information on the importance of PMTCT activities through the use of community radio stations, Television, newsletters, bill boards etc. People need to know more about PMTCT activities, health personnel need continuous training to provide clear information on PMTCT activities.
Project description:INTRODUCTION: Mother-to-Mother (M2M) or "Mentor Mother" programmes utilise HIV positive mothers to provide support and advice to HIV positive pregnant women and mothers of HIV exposed babies. Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) supported a Mentor Mother programme in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe from 2009 to 2012; with programme beneficiaries observed to have far higher retention at 6-8 weeks (99% vs 50%, p<0.0005) and to have higher adherence to Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission (PMTCT) guidelines, compared to those not opting in. In this study we explore how the M2M progamme may have contributed to these findings. METHODS: In this qualitative study we used thematic analysis of in-depth interviews (n?=?79). This study was conducted in 2 urban districts of Bulawayo, Zimbabwe's second largest city. RESULTS: Interviews were completed by 14 mentor mothers, 10 mentor mother family members, 30 beneficiaries (women enrolled both in PMTCT and M2M), 10 beneficiary family members, 5 women enrolled in PMTCT but who had declined to take part in the M2M programme and 10 health care staff members. All beneficiaries and health care staff reported that the programme had improved retention and provided rich information on how this was achieved. Additionally respondents described how the programme had helped bring about beneficial behaviour change. CONCLUSIONS: M2M programmes offer great potential to empower communities affected by HIV to catalyse positive behaviour change. Our results illustrate how M2M involvement may increase retention in PMTCT programmes. Non-disclosure to one's partner, as well as some cultural practices prevalent in Zimbabwe appear to be major barriers to participation in M2M programmes.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Single-dose nevirapine (sd-NVP) has been the main option for prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV-1 in low-resource settings. However, sd-NVP can induce the selection of HIV-1 resistant mutations in mothers and infants. In Mozambique, there are limited data regarding the profile of NVP resistance associated mutations (RAM) in the context of PMTCT. OBJECTIVES:To assess the prevalence and the factors associated with NVP RAM among children born to HIV-1 infected mothers enrolled in the PMTCT programme adopted in Mozambique. METHODS:One hundred and fifty seven children aged 6 to 48 weeks were sequentially included (July 2011 to March 2012) at four centres in Maputo. Genotyping of RAM was performed in samples with HIV-1 RNA? 100 copies/?L (Viroseq). Sequencing was performed with ABI 3100 (Applied Biosystems). Logistic regression modelling was undertaken to identify the factors associated with NVP RAM. RESULTS:Seventy-nine children had their samples genotyped. Their median age was 7.0 (3-12) months and 92.4% received prophylaxis with sd-NVP at birth plus daily NVP. 35.4% of mothers received antiretrovirals (ARVs) for PMTCT. ARV RAM were detected in 43 (54.4%) of the children. 45.6% of these children had at least one NVP RAM. The most common mutations associated with NVP resistance were K103N (n = 16) and Y181C (n = 15). NVP RAM was significantly associated with mother exposure to PMTCT (crude odds ratio [OR] 30.3, 95% CI 4.93-186.34) and with mother's CD4 count < 350 cells/mm3 (crude OR 3.08, 95% CI 1.02-9.32). In the multivariable analysis the mother's exposure to PMTCT was the only variable significantly associated with NVP RAM (adjusted OR 48.65, 95% CI 9.33-253.66). CONCLUSIONS:We found a high prevalence of NVP RAM among children who were exposed to the drug regimen for PMTCT in Mozambique. The mothers' exposure to PMTCT significantly increased the risk of NVP RAM.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:The coverage of prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) services in South Africa is variable. Identifying gaps in the implementation of these services is necessary to isolate steps needed to further reduce paediatric infections and eliminate transmission. SETTING:Two primary care clinics in Paarl, South Africa. PARTICIPANTS:1225 pregnant women; inclusion criteria were 18 years or older, clinic attendance and remaining in area for at least 1?year. METHODS:Data were collected through the Drakenstein Child Health Study, a population-based birth cohort in a periurban area of the Western Cape, South Africa. A combination of clinic records, hospital records, national database searches and maternal self-report were collected during the study. RESULTS:Of the 1225 mothers enrolled in the cohort between 2012 and 2015, 260 (21%) were confirmed HIV infected antenatally and 1 mother tested positive in the postnatal period. Of those with documentation (n=250/260, 96%), the majority (99%) received antiretroviral prophylaxis or therapy (ART) before labour; however, there was a high rate of defaulting from ART noted during pregnancy (20%). All HIV-exposed infants with data received antiretroviral prophylaxis, 35% were exclusively breast fed until 6 weeks and 16% for 6 months. There were two cases of infant HIV infection (0.8%) who were initiated on ART but had complicated histories. CONCLUSION:Despite the low transmission rate in this cohort, reaching elimination will require further work, and this study illustrates several areas to improve implementation of PMTCT services and reduce paediatric infections including retesting at-risk HIV-negative mothers through the duration of breast feeding, infant HIV testing at any admission in addition to routine testing and improved counselling to prevent defaulting from treatment. Better data surveillance systems are essential for determining the implementation of PMTCT guidelines.
Project description:About 40% of the new HIV infections in Ethiopia are among children < 15 years of age. The great majority of these infections occur through Mother-to-child HIV transmission (MTCT). For prevention of MTCT, the national guidelines has been revised to incorporate scientific advances in HIV prevention, treatment and care. Since 2005, the country has been implementing a peer mentor programme called Mother Support Group (MSG), which provides psychosocial and adherence support for HIV positive mothers. This study examined implementation of PMTCT guidelines revisions and outcomes of HIV exposed babies in the MSG in Addis Ababa. Retrospective routine data were collected between 2005 and August 2013 from seven randomly selected primary health facilities. Odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals were calculated using logistic regression models. Several guidelines revisions were made between 2001 and 2013 in HIV testing approaches, prophylactic antiretroviral options, infant feeding recommendations and infant HIV testing algorithms. Revisions on the CD4 thresholds were associated with a significant increase in the proportion of women initiating antiretroviral treatment from 0 in 2005 to 62% in 2013. Revisions in infant feeding recommendations led to a 92.3% reported practice of exclusive breastfeeding in 2013 compared to 60.9% in 2005. Two and four percent of the HIV exposed babies were HIV positive by six and 18 months respectively. Not receiving prophylactic ART and receiving mixed feeding were independent predictors for babies having an HIV positive antibody test at 18 months. The rate of HIV status disclosure increased significantly year by year. Over the years, the PMTCT recommendations have moved from having a solo focus on PMTCT to holistic and inclusive approaches emphasizing survival beyond HIV prevention. The data reflect favourable outcomes of HIV exposed babies in terms of averted MTCT though serious gaps in data quality remain. For successful implementation of Option-B plus, the identified gaps in the MSG need to be addressed.