Rwandan Youth With HIV: Impact of Mental Health on Adherence
Methods: To date, 159 14-21 year-old (M=17) males (49%) and females (51%) were recruited from the two main HIV care providers in Kigali. Youth completed ACASI baseline assessments of their mental health and adherence. 26% reported being orphans, 95% reported being poor, and 27% reported physical abuse. Over the past month, 35% endorsed good or excellent adherence to antiretroviral, with 25% reporting no missed doses and 28% missing 1 day of anti-retrovirals.
Results: Higher rates of anxiety/depression and more traumatic events were associated with missing at least one ART dose (p <.01), and more reported traumatic events and physical abuse were linked to less likelihood of taking ART as prescribed (p<.01). Importantly, greater resiliency and self-esteem were associated with better adherence (p<.01).
Conclusions: Increasing adherence among HIV infected youth is a global public health priority. Findings underscore the role of mental health in adherence. HIV care must attend to youth trauma, anxiety and depression to improve adherence.
Learning Areas:Chronic disease management and prevention
Social and behavioral sciences
Describe mental health concerns for HIV-positive Rwandan youth
Keyword(s): Child/Adolescent Mental Health, HIV/AIDS
Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the co-principal investigator on the federally funded study to increase medication adherence among HIV+ youth.I am a MD with over 15 years experience in the field of HIV/AIDS research, specifically around issues pertaining to youth.
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.