Online Program

Improving ARV adherence to reducing mortality among people living with HIV AIDS (PLWH) in the bolgatanga municipality of northern Ghana

Monday, November 4, 2013 : 11:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m.

Samuel Angyogdem, MPH, Regional Health Directorate, Bolgatanga, Ghana
Francis Yeji, Msc, Ghana Health Service, Navrongo Health Research Centre, Navrongo, Ghana
Background: The advent of affordable and accessible antiretroviral (ARV) therapy HIV patients has led to the implementation of many ARV programs in many countries. This has necessitated the need to assess adherence level among ARV-users, in order to make recommendations to inform policy. Objective: To assess the challenges and opportunities for ARV adherence among ARV-users in Bolgatanga Regional Hospital of Ghana. Methods: A cross sectional survey involving clients on ART, Health providers and Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs). Purposive systematic sampling was used selected 20 ARV-users, 9 different categories of service providers, and 2 international NGOs providing care and support to PLWH. Data was collected through administered questionnaire, observation and review of existing documents to ascertain ARV adherence in 2010. Results: Adherence level among ARV-users in Bolgatanga hospital was 90%; provider assessment through pill counts and appointments showed 95% adherence. Challenges to ARV adherence was the cost of ARVs, long distance to facility; waiting time, stigmatization, and seasonal food shortage. For instance 60% of respondents could not afford to pay for one month supply of ARVs, 65% and 85% had long distance and waiting time respectively as barriers. Mortality among PWLH on ARVs reduced from 9% in 2009 to 5% in 2010. The study revealed that NGOs provided vital roles in psychosocial support and bridged gaps between institutional based care and community based care that spur continuum of care for ARV adherence. Conclusions: Continuous monitoring of services to PLWH, identifying and implementing needed changes; would improve adherence and reduce mortality among PLWH

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Administration, management, leadership
Advocacy for health and health education
Assessment of individual and community needs for health education
Program planning
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Assess the adherence level of ARV-users among PLWH in Northern Ghana. Identify and discuss the challenges and how to improve ARV adherence to reduce mortality among PLWH; and recommend solutions to inform policy

Keyword(s): HIV/AIDS, Adherence

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Epidemiologist, Masters in Public Health ( Worked in strengthening district health systems, and in disease control and prevention; especially in HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis. Analytic, researcher and results oriented.Twenty-five (25) years experience in healthcare delivery in resource limited setting).
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.