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Assessment of adherence to highly active antiretroviral therapy and associated factors among people living with HIV at Debrebrihan Referral Hospital and Health Center, Northeast Ethiopia: a cross-sectional study

Authors Ketema AK, Weret ZS

Received 16 December 2014

Accepted for publication 22 January 2015

Published 11 March 2015 Volume 2015:7 Pages 75—81


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Shenghan Lai

Abush Kebede Ketema,1 Zewdu Shewangizaw Weret2

1Regional Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor, Management Sciences for Health, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia; 2College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Arbaminch University, Arbaminch, Ethiopia

Abstract: Patient adherence to antiretroviral combination therapy is a critical component to successful treatment outcome. Nonadherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) is a major challenge to AIDS care, and the risks associated with it are extensive. The intention of this study was to determine prevalence and associated factors with adherence to highly active ART among people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) at the Debrebrihan Referral Hospital and Health Center, Northeast Ethiopia. A cross-sectional study design with systematic random sampling conducted by the use of a structured, pretested self-rating adherence questionnaire was used to conduct the study among 422 respondents from the Debrebrihan Referral Hospital and Health Center. A single population proportion formula at 95% CI with 5% of marginal error at 50% of prevalence of occurrence was used to determine sample size. Adherence was defined as not missing a single ART dose during the 30-day period prior to filling out the self-report. Adherence was measured by self-reports by the patients. These results were then used in binary logistic regression analysis. Covariates were analyzed by bivariate and multivariate logistic regression with SPSS statistical software. The total number of respondents in this study was 422; their median age was 35 years. Among the participants, 95.5% were taking their medication without missing a dose. Factors such as having emotional or practical support positively encouraged ART adherence (adjusted odds ratio 0.16 [95% CI 0.05–0.49]). However, users of traditional, complementary, and alternative medicine (TCAM) (adjusted odds ratio 4.7 [95% CI 1.06–21.22]) had nearly a five times higher risk for ART nonadherence (P<0.05) than those not using TCAM. Adherence to ART among PLWA is imperative and standard. But, there is still a need to boost psychological support and practical support for the clients, and there is also a need to create a more integrative approach with TCAM in order to increase adherence to ART. Strengthening emotional and practical support for PLWHA and integrating TCAM with the proper use of ART are mandatory to enhance ART adherence.

Keywords: people living with HIV, adherence, holy water, traditional medicine, complementary medicine, alternative medicine

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