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Scale up use of family planning services to prevent maternal transmission of HIV among discordant couples: a cross-sectional study within a resource-limited setting

Authors Kuete M, Yuan HF, Tchoua Kemayou AL, Songo EA, Yang F, Ma XL, Xiong CL, Zhang HP

Received 2 February 2016

Accepted for publication 28 May 2016

Published 3 October 2016 Volume 2016:10 Pages 1967—1977

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/PPA.S105624

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewers approved by Dr Colin Mak

Peer reviewer comments 5

Editor who approved publication: Dr Naifeng Liu

Martin Kuete,1,2 HongFang Yuan,1 Aude Laure Tchoua Kemayou,2 Emmanuel Ancel Songo,2 Fan Yang,1 XiuLan Ma,1 ChengLiang Xiong,1 HuiPing Zhang1

1Obstetrics and Gynecology, Reproductive Center, Family Planning and Research Institute, Tongji Medical College, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Wuhan, Hubei, People’s Republic of China; 2Main Maternity of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Yaounde Central Hospital, Faculty of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Yaounde, Cameroon

Background: Integration of family planning services (FPS) into human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) care for HIV-infected women is an important aspect of the global prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) strategy. We assessed the integration of FPS into routine care of HIV-infected mothers by evaluating the uptake and barriers of contraception and PMTCT services.
Methods: We conducted an interventional study using the interrupted time series approach in the health care facilities located in Yaounde, Cameroon. First, structured questionnaires related to family planning use, PMTCT services use, and infection risk of the sexual partner were administered to the first trimester pregnant women who were HIV infected and living with uninfected partners. Second, 2 weeks before the delivery date, the women were interviewed according to the prior counseling interventions received, in order to assess their behavior on FPS, antiretroviral therapy (ART) use, delivery option, and infant nourishment to be adopted. P-values below 0.05 were considered statistically significant in the statistical analyses.
Results: Of 94 HIV-infected women, 69% were stable couples. Only 13% of women had attended FPS before conception. Although the vast majority were knowledgeable about modern and traditional contraception methods, only 19% had experienced effective contraceptive methods. However, 66% preferred condom use, 45% having three children still expressed a desire to conceive, while 44% reported abortions, 65% had tried to avoid the current pregnancy, and 12% of women were ART naïve. Several predictors such as education, abortion rate, unplanned pregnancies, and partners’ decision were associated with the nonuse of effective contraceptive methods. Moreover, barriers including sex inequity, lack of partner support, ART shortages, and lack of HIV viral load monitoring were prevalent among the participants (P=0.001). However FPS use, ART compliance, and safe options to PMTCT significantly increased after the educational counseling interventions (P=0.001).
Conclusion: Scaling up the FPS by incorporating routine PMTCT services into reproductive health care should contribute to preventing both horizontal and vertical transmission of HIV.

Keywords: contraception, HIV infected women, transmission, interventions, education

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