Article

HIV testing among pregnant women living with HIV in India: are private healthcare providers routinely violating women's human rights?

BMC International Health and Human Rights (Impact Factor: 1.44). 03/2014; 14(1):7. DOI: 10.1186/1472-698X-14-7
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT In India, approximately 49,000 women living with HIV become pregnant and deliver each year. While the government of India has made progress increasing the availability of prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) services, only about one quarter of pregnant women received an HIV test in 2010, and about one-in-five that were found positive for HIV received interventions to prevent vertical transmission of HIV.
Between February 2012 to March 2013, 14 HIV-positive women who had recently delivered a baby were recruited from HIV positive women support groups, Government of India Integrated Counseling and Testing Centers, and nongovernmental organizations in Mysore and Pune, India. In-depth interviews were conducted to examine their general experiences with antenatal healthcare; specific experiences around HIV counseling and testing; and perceptions about their care and follow-up treatment. Data were analyzed thematically using the human rights framework for HIV testing adopted by the United Nations and India's National AIDS Control Organization.
While all of the HIV-positive women in the study received HIV and PMTCT services at a government hospital or antiretroviral therapy center, almost all reported attending a private clinic or hospital at some point in their pregnancy. According to the participants, HIV testing often occurred without consent; there was little privacy; breaches of confidentiality were commonplace; and denial of medical treatment occurred routinely. Among women living with HIV in this study, violations of their human rights occurred more commonly in private rather than public healthcare settings.
There is an urgent need for capacity building among private healthcare providers to improve standards of practice with regard to informed consent process, HIV testing, patient confidentiality, treatment, and referral of pregnant women living with HIV.

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Available from: Purnima Madhivanan, Apr 06, 2014
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    ABSTRACT: Background Male involvement (MI) in Prevention of mother to child transmission (PMTCT) of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) services remains low despite the progress registered in the implementation of the PMTCT program. Male involvement in PMTCT is a fairly new concept in Malawi that has not been fully implemented within PMTCT service provision despite its inclusion in the PMTCT guidelines. One of the reasons for the limited MI is the lack of knowledge on both its relevance and the role of men in the program. Currently, men have been encouraged to participate in PMTCT services without prior research on their understanding of the relevance and their role in PMTCT. This information is vital to the development of programs that will require MI in PMTCT. The objective of this study was to explore the views of men, pregnant women and health care providers on the importance and roles of MI in PMTCT services in Blantyre Malawi.Methods An exploratory descriptive qualitative study was conducted from December 2012 to January 2013 at South Lunzu Health Centre (SLHC) and its catchment area in Blantyre, Malawi. We conducted 6 key informant interviews (KIIs) with health care workers and 4 focus group discussions (FGDs) with 18 men and 17 pregnant women. Interviews and discussions were digitally recorded and simultaneously transcribed and translated into English. Data were analyzed using framework analysis approach.ResultsThe major themes that emerged on the relevance of MI in PMTCT were a) uptake of interventions along the PMTCT cascade b) support mechanism and c) education strategy. Lack of MI in PMTCT was reported to result into non-disclosure of HIV test results and non-compliance with PMTCT interventions.Conclusions Male involvement is paramount for the uptake of interventions at the different cascades of PMTCT. The absence of male involvement may compromise compliance with PMTCT interventions.
    BMC International Health and Human Rights 10/2014; 14(1):30. DOI:10.1186/s12914-014-0030-y · 1.44 Impact Factor