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Continuum of care among HIV-1 positive patients in a single center in Italy (2007–2017)

Authors Lagi F, Kiros ST, Campolmi I, Giachè S, Rogasi PG, Mazzetti M, Bartalesi F, Trotta M, Nizzoli P, Bartoloni A, Sterrantino G

Received 18 July 2018

Accepted for publication 24 October 2018

Published 30 November 2018 Volume 2018:12 Pages 2545—2551


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Filippo Lagi,1 Seble Tekle Kiros,1 Irene Campolmi,1 Susanna Giachè,1 Pier Giorgio Rogasi,2 Marcello Mazzetti,2 Filippo Bartalesi,2 Michele Trotta,2 Patrizia Nizzoli,3 Alessandro Bartoloni,1,2 Gaetana Sterrantino2

1Infectious Disease Unit, Department of Experimental and Clinical Medicine, University of Florence, Florence, Italy; 2Infectious and Tropical Disease Unit, Azienda Ospedaliero – Universitaria Careggi, Florence, Italy; 3Department of Pharmaceuticals, USL Toscana Centro, Florence, Italy

Aim: This study aimed to determine rates of retention in care, viral suppression, and use of antiretroviral therapy (ART) and identify risk factors for loss to follow-up (FU) in an adult cohort from a tertiary teaching hospital in Florence, Italy.
Methods: We included all newly diagnosed HIV-infected patients aged >18 years who were linked to our clinic from July 2007 to December 2015. On July 31, 2017, we evaluated the proportion of patients retained in care, on ART, and having HIV RNA <50 copies/mL. We assessed predictors of loss to FU through univariate and multivariate analyses.
Results: We included 423 patients. By July 2017, 23 (5.5%) patients died, 25 (5.9%) moved to a different center, and 64 (15.1%) were lost to follow-up. Among the remaining 311 patients (73.5%), 96.5% were on ART and 95% had HIV RNA <50 copies/mL. After adjustment for sex, age at diagnosis, origin, and risk of transmission, our results showed a lower retention rate in those not on ART at the end of the follow-up (adjusted HR [aHR]: 10.33, 95% CI 5.80–18.40, P<0.001), non-Italians (aHR: 1.69, 95% CI: 0.99–2.89, P=0.054) and <35 years old (aHR: 1.85; 95% CI 1.04–3.30, P=0.037).
Conclusion: In our hospital in Florence, we found a gap in retention in care among foreigners, people <35 years old, and those who were not in treatment at the end of the follow-up. The results of this study may help to identify opportunities for appropriate future interventions.

Keywords: HIV-1, continuum of care, retention in care, Italy, 90-90-90 target, predictors associated to loss to follow-up

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