Article

The Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM): Impacts on health and quality of life of people living with HIV in Cambodia

Authors:
  • KHANA Center for Population Health Research
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Abstract

This study evaluated the impacts of the Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM) Project on health and quality of life of people living with HIV (PLHIV). Outcome indicators from baseline documentation (2010) were compared to those obtained at midterm (2012) and end line (2014). Results showed that HIV prevalence among pregnant women aged 15-24 attending antenatal care decreased from 0.5% at baseline to 0.3% at midterm and end line. Proportion of PLHIV who were on antiretroviral therapy (ART) 12 months after the initiation of the treatment increased from 85% at baseline and midterm to 89.5% at end line. Proportion of PLHIV in need for ART and currently on the treatment increased from 90.0% at baseline to 92.5% at midterm and to 96.0% at end line. Regarding their health status, proportion of PLHIV reporting their overall health as good increased from 52.0% at baseline to 78.3% and 80.2% at midterm and end line, respectively. Similarly, proportion of respondents reporting their overall quality of life as good increased sharply from 35.0% at baseline to 73.3% and 72.0% at midterm and end line, respectively. In conclusion, the SAHACOM is effective in improving health and quality of life of PLHIV in Cambodia.

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... We will measure depressive symptoms using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) [30], quality of life using the WHO Quality of Life BREF (WHOQOL-BREF) for people living with HIV and EQ-5D-5L [31][32][33] and stigma and discrimination using the People Living with HIV Stigma Index [18]. We will also measure self-efficacy and levels of social support using the Perceived Self-Efficacy for Receiving Antiretroviral Therapy Scale (PSEARTS) [34][35][36] and Berlin Social Support Scale (BSSS) [35,37,38], respectively. ...
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Background Multi-month dispensing (MMD) is the mainstay mechanism for clinically stable people living with HIV in Cambodia to refill antiretroviral therapy (ART) every 3-6 months. However, less frequent ART dispensing through the community-based ART delivery (CAD) model could further reduce the clients’ and health facilities’ burden. While community-based services have been recognized as an integral component of HIV response in Cambodia, their role and effectiveness in ART delivery have yet to be systematically assessed. This study aims to evaluate the CAD model’s effectiveness on the continuum of care and treatment outcomes for stable people living with HIV in Cambodia. Methods We will conduct this quasi-experimental study in 20 ART clinics across the capital city and nine provinces between May 2021 and April 2023. Study sites were purposively selected based on the availability of implementing partners, the number of people living with HIV each clinic serves, and the accessibility of the clinics. In the intervention arm, approximately 2000 stable people living with HIV will receive ART and services from the CAD model. Another 2000 stable people living with HIV in the control arm will receive MMD—a standard care model for stable people living with HIV. The primary outcomes will be retention in care, viral load suppression, and adherence to ART. The secondary endpoints will include health providers’ work burden, the model’s cost-effectiveness, quality of life, mental health, social support, stigma, and discrimination. We will compare the outcome indicators within each arm at baseline, midline, and endline using descriptive and inferential statistics. We will evaluate the differences between the intervention and control arms using the difference-in-differences method. We will perform economic evaluations to determine if the intervention is cost-effective. Discussion This study will build the evidence base for future implementation and scale-up of CAD model in Cambodia and other similar settings. Furthermore, it will strengthen engagements with community stakeholders and further improve community mobilization, a vital pillar of the Cambodian HIV response. Trial registration ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04766710 . Registered 23 February 2021, Version 1.
... The midterm survey was conducted in 2012 among 352 MSM, and the endline survey was conducted in April 2014 among 394 MSM in Battambang and Siem Reap provinces. Details of the main study have been published elsewhere [21][22][23][24][25]. ...
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Background The prevalence of HIV and sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among key populations in Cambodia continues to rise. To address this issue, KHANA, the largest national HIV organization in the country developed and implemented the Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM) project. This study aims to determine the impacts of the SAHACOM on sexual behaviors and the uptake of HIV/STI services among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Cambodia. Methods We compared outcome indicators at midterm (n = 352) and endline (n = 394). Surveys were conducted in 2012 and 2014 in Battambang and Siem Reap provinces. A two-stage cluster sampling method was employed to select the study sample for structured interviews. ResultsThe midterm and endline samples were similar. The average number of sexual partners in the past three months decreased significantly from 6.2 to 4.0 (p = 0.03). The proportion of MSM who reported paying for sex with men in the past three months also decreased significantly from 19.0 % to 9.7 % (OR = 2.0, 95 % CI = 1.3-3.0). No significant change was found in condom and lubricant use in all types of relationships. Regarding STIs, 28.1 % of MSM at midterm reported having at least one STI symptom in the past three months compared to 6.1 % at endline (OR = 4.6, 95 % CI = 2.9–7.4); out of them, 14.1 % of MSM at midterm sought treatment compared to 20.7 % at endline (OR = 2.6, 95 % CI = 1.1–6.9). The proportion of MSM who reported using illicit drugs in the past three months also decreased significantly from 12.2 % to 5.1 % (OR = 2.4, 95 % CI = 1.4–4.2). However, the proportion of MSM who reported having been tested for HIV in the past six months decreased significantly from 94.1 % to 77.1 % (OR = 2.9, 95 % CI = 1.8–3.6). Conclusions Findings from this study indicate that the SAHACOM was effective in improving sexual behaviors and related health outcomes among MSM under the project. However, it could not increase condom use and HIV testing rates among this key population. Tailored intervention programs are needed to improve condom use and HIV testing among MSM in Cambodia.
... Data were collected in April and May 2014 as part of an impact evaluation of the Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM) project. The details of the main study have been published elsewhere [37][38][39][40]. ...
Article
Despite remarkable success in the fight against HIV, HIV prevalence in many countries remains high among key populations including men who have sex with men (MSM), and HIV testing rates is relatively low among this hard-to-reach population. This cross-sectional study explores factors associated with recent HIV testing among MSM in Cambodia. This study was conducted in 2014 and included 384 MSM randomly selected from two provinces of Battembang and Siem Reap, using a two-stage cluster sampling method. A structured questionnaire was used for face-to-face interviews to collect data on socio-demographic characteristics, HIV testing history, sexual behaviors, HIV testing attitudes, and HIV knowledge. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to identify factors independently associated with recent HIV testing. Mean age of the participants was 23.4 (SD = 5.2). Of total, 83.6 % had been tested for HIV at least once in their lifetime, and 65.1 % had been tested for HIV in the past six months. After controlling for other covariates, MSM who had been tested for HIV in the past six months were significantly more likely to regard themselves as female (AOR = 2.29, 95 % CI = 1.06-5.37), have received some form of HIV education in the past six months (AOR = 3.97, 95 % CI = 1.91-8.26), perceive that they were at higher HIV risk compared to the general population (AOR = 2.48, 95 % CI = 1.14-4.86), have been diagnosed with an STI in the past six months (AOR = 3.19, 95 % CI = 1.02-9.24), report using a condom at last sexual intercourse with a man or woman (AOR = 2.24, 95 % CI = 1.06-3.13), and report using a condom at last sexual intercourse with a boyfriend (AOR = 2.17, 95 % CI = 1.04-5.31). This study highlights the common practices of risky sexual behaviors and relatively low rate of recent HIV testing among MSM in Cambodia. HIV education and social marketing should be expanded and tailored for MSM, specifically addressing the risk of unprotected anal intercourse and the importance of regular HIV testing for early enrolment in the care and treatment cascade.
... The survey was conducted in Battembang and Siem Reap provinces between April and May 2014. Details of this evaluation study have been published elsewhere [31][32][33][34]. ...
Article
Compared to the general population, men who have sex with men (MSM) are at greater risk for HIV and less understood due to their more hidden and stigmatized nature. Moreover, the discrepancy in findings in the literature merits further investigations in MSM populations from different cultures and settings. We therefore conducted this study to explore factors associated with inconsistent condom use among high-risk MSM in Cambodia. This cross-sectional study was conducted in 2014 among 367 MSM randomly selected from Battembang and Siem Reap using a two-stage cluster sampling method. A structured questionnaire was used for face-to-face interviews to collect information on characteristics of respondents, HIV testing history, self-perception of HIV risk, substance use, sexual behaviors, mental disorders, and HIV knowledge. Multivariable logistic regression analysis was performed to identify factors independently associated with inconsistent condom use. On average, 62.3% of respondents reported that they always used condoms over the past three months. The rates varied with types of sexual partners; the proportion of respondents who reported always using condoms was 55.1%, 64.2%, 75.9%, 73.0%, 78.1%, and 70.3%, for sexual partners who were girlfriends, boyfriends, female sex workers, male sex workers, female clients, or male clients, respectively. After adjustment, inconsistent condom use was significantly associated with age of ≥25 (AOR = 1.77, 95% CI = 1.09-2.86), self-rated quality of life as good or very good (AOR = 4.37, 95% CI = 1.79-5.67), self-perception of higher HIV risk compared to the general population (AOR = 2.37, 95% CI = 1.35-4.17), illicit drug use in the past three months (AOR = 5.76, 95% CI = 1.65-10.09), and reported consistent lubricant use when selling anal sex to men in the past three months (AOR = 2.85, 95% CI = 1.07-8.12). We found risky sexual behaviors to be considerably high among MSM in this study, especially among those who used illicit drugs or were older than 25. HIV education and social marketing should be expanded and specifically designed for MSM to better educate on the increased risk of HIV with unprotected anal sex and illicit drug use as risk factors, and the importance of the use of both condoms and lubricant during anal intercourse.
... The sample size was proportionally allocated to the number of FEWs in two study sites. The details of the study have been published elsewhere [20,21]. ...
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Background In Cambodia, there has been an increase in entertainment work as a result of the breakdown of the traditional brothel-based sex industry, presenting new challenges to addressing the health issues and needs of people working in the entertainment industry. This study aims to identify factors associated with psychological distress among female entertainment workers (FEWs) in Cambodia. Methods A two-stage cluster sampling method was used to randomly select 657 FEWs from entertainment establishments in Phnom Penh and Siem Reap in April and May 2014 for interviews using a structured questionnaire. Psychological distress was measured using the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12), and multivariate logistic regression analysis was conducted. Results Almost half of FEWs (43.2 %) had a higher level of psychological distress (GHQ-12 > 3), while 19.5 % reported having suicidal thoughts, and 7.3 % reported having attempted to commit suicide in the past 3 months. Controlling for confounding factors, women with a higher level of psychological distress were significantly more likely to rate their overall health (AOR = 1.88, 95 % CI 1.20 to 2.94) and quality of life (AOR = 2.39, 95 % CI 1.47 to 3.87) as poor. They were also significantly more likely to have suicidal ideation (AOR = 2.41, 95 % CI 1.45 to 3.76), rate their HIV risk as higher than the general population (AOR = 0.48, 95 % CI 0.31 to 0.74), have been forced to drink at work (AOR = 1.77, 95 % CI 1.19 to 2.62), have had clients requesting not to use a condom (AOR = 3.48, 95 % CI 1.14 to 10.62), be not able to find condoms when they needed it (AOR = 0.64, 95 % CI 0.45 to 0.93), have had a family member who said hurtful things to them during childhood (AOR = 1.84, 95 % CI 1.24 to 2.75), and have had a parent or guardian who had been physically abused (AOR = 1.93, 95 % CI 1.34 to 2.82). Conclusions FEWs in Cambodia experience high levels of psychological distress, which likely stems from both past negative experiences and current working conditions. For women that are experiencing psychological distress, intervention programs aimed at improving mental health should specifically address substance use, condom availability and negotiation skills, and suicide risk.
... In response to this gap, a study related to mental health of key populations in Cambodia was conducted. This study was conducted as part of an evaluation of a community-based HIV project known as the Sustainable Action Against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM), which was implemented by KHANA, the largest national NGO providing community-based HIV prevention, care, and support services in Cambodia [30]. Participants were MSM recruited from Battambang and Siem Reap province between April and May 2014. ...
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Background Poor mental health contributes to poor HIV prevention, treatment and care outcomes. This paper documents factors associated with psychological distress among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Cambodia and discusses potential ways in which routine mental health management could be integrated into HIV services. Methods A cross-sectional study was conducted in 2014 among 394 MSM randomly selected from two provinces using a two-stage cluster sampling method. A structured questionnaire was used to assess psychological distress, sexual behaviors, substance use, adverse childhood experiences and family dysfunction. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was performed to explore factors associated with levels of psychological distress. Results In total, 10.7 % of the respondents reported having suicidal thoughts and 6.6 % reported having attempted to commit suicide in the past three months, while 38.8 % had a higher level of psychological distress (GHQ-12 > 3), which indicates poor mental health. Higher levels of psychological distress were independently associated with older age (AOR = 1.09, 95 % CI 1.03–1.14), alcohol use (AOR = 3.3, 95 % CI 1.36–7.83), illicit drug use (AOR = 3.53, 95 % CI 1.12–11.18), poor self-reported quality of life (AOR = 7.45, 95 % CI 1.79–3.04), and reduced condom use at last sex (AOR = 0.40, 95 % CI 0.21–0.73). MSM with higher levels of psychological distress were significantly more likely to report that a family member said hurtful things to them (AOR = 1.80, 95 % CI 1.10–2.97), a parent or guardian had been physically abused (AOR = 3.51, 95 % CI 1.86–6.62), and a family member had been mentally ill (AOR = 4.01, 95 % CI 2.06–7.81) when they were growing up. Conclusions In order to mitigate psychological distress among MSM in Cambodia, integration of mental health interventions within HIV programmes should be strengthened. To achieve optimal impact, these interventions should also address alcohol and other substance use, and low condom use among distressed MSM. In addition, training of clinical and non-clinical HIV service providers to screen for mental health symptoms, and subsequent provision of peer-based outreach and social support for MSM identified with psychological distress is required.
... In April 2014, data used for this study were collected as part of an impact evaluation of the Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM) project implemented by KHANA, the largest national non-governmental organisation providing integrated HIV prevention, care, and support services at the community level in Cambodia. The details of the SAHACOM project have been published elsewhere (Yi, Chhoun, Brant, Kita, & Tuot, 2014; Yi et al., 2015). The study participants were randomly selected for face-to-face interviews from a list of hotspots obtained from KHANA's partners who implemented the SAHACOM programmes in the capital city of Phnom Penh. ...
... The cross-sectional study was conducted between December 2015 and February 2016 in 13 major sites (1 capital city and 12 provinces) of Cambodia. Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) method was used to recruit participants with support from community-based implementing partners of KHANA, the largest national NGO providing community-based HIV prevention, care, and support services in Cambodia [15]. Among the 13 study sites, participants were recruited in 20 specific locations (six locations in Phnom Penh and 14 locations in the provinces). ...
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Background: Transgender people are disproportionately affected by HIV. Despite their high vulnerability to HIV, lack of adequate epidemiological and surveillance data related to this population in many countries prevents provision of appropriate services. This paper summarizes descriptive findings from a national integrated biological and behavioral survey and discusses policy implications of the findings on HIV prevention among transgender women in Cambodia. Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted between December 2015 and February 2016. Participants were recruited from 20 sites in the capital city and 12 provinces of Cambodia using Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) method. Behavioral data were collected through structured questionnaire interviews, and rapid finger-prick HIV testing was performed. Descriptive data analyses were conducted using STATA. Results: This study included 1,375 transgender women with a mean age of 25.9 years (SD= 7.1). The overall prevalence of HIV was 5.9%. The prevalence of HIV was significantly higher among urban participants compared to their rural counterparts (6.5% vs. 2.6%, p= 0.02). Almost one in five (19.6%) had never been tested for HIV prior to the study. Overall, 45.0% reported ever using gender affirming hormones. More than one-third (39.1%) reported not using condoms in their last sex, 29.8% had engaged in sex in exchange for money/gifts, and 14.0% reported that they had experienced at least one symptom of sexually transmitted infections (STI) in the past year. About one in ten (10.1%) reported having used some form of amphetamine-type stimulant drugs, while 6.5% reported having sex during or after using illicit drugs. A significant number of participants experienced sexual abuse (39.2%), losing a job (24.3%), or physical abuse (23.6%) because of their transgender identity. In addition, 82.9% and 88.9% would be willing to use the HIV self-test and pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), respectively, if they become available. Conclusions: The high prevalence of HIV, STI, and related risk behaviors among transgender women in Cambodia is of great concern, suggesting an urgent need to further expand tailored prevention interventions for this key population focusing on individual, social and structural drivers of HIV. HIV self-test and PrEP should be explored as a priority.
... In Cambodia, the estimated HIV prevalence in the general population aged 15 to 49 is 0.6% in 2014 [15], which is concentrated among key populations including men who have sex with men (2.2%), transgender women (5.9%), female entertainment workers (9.8%) and injecting drug users (24.8%) [16][17][18][19]. Coverage of ART is high, with 96% of people living HIV in need for ART currently receiving it [20]. Prevalence of diabetes mellitus, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia in the general adult population in Cambodia is estimated to be approximately 5%, 11% and 21%, respectively [21,22]. ...
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Background With rapid expansion of antiretroviral therapy for HIV, there are rising life expectancies among people living with HIV. As a result, co-morbidity from non-communicable diseases in those living and aging with HIV is increasingly being reported. Published data on this issue have been limited in Cambodia. The aim of this study was to determine the prevalence of diabetes mellitus, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia and associated risk factors in adults living with HIV in Cambodia. Methods This cross-sectional study was conducted in five provinces of Cambodia from May-June 2015. Information was obtained on socio-demographic and clinical characteristics through face-to-face interviews using a structured questionnaire, and anthropometric and biochemical measurements were performed. Diabetes mellitus was diagnosed with fasting blood glucose ≥126 mg/dl, hypertension with systolic blood pressure ≥140 mmHg and/or diastolic blood pressure ≥ 90 mmHg and hypercholesterolemia with fasting blood cholesterol ≥190 mg/dl. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to explore risk factors. Results The study sample included 510 adults living with HIV; 67% were female, with a mean age of 45 (standard deviation = 8) years. Of these, 8.8% had diabetes mellitus, 15.1% had hypertension and 34.7% had hypercholesterolemia. Of the total participants with non-communicable diseases (n = 244), 47.8% had one or more diseases, and 75% were not aware of their diseases prior to the study: new disease was diagnosed in 90% of diabetes mellitus, 44% of hypertension and 90% of hypercholesterolemia. Single disease occurred in 81%, dual disease in 17% and triple disease in 2%. In adjusted analyses, those consuming 1 serving of fruit compare to 2 servings as significantly with diabetes mellitus, those eating 1 serving of fruit compare to 2 servings and using lard for cooking were significantly associated with hypertension, and those being unemployed, having monthly income less than 100 USD and being underweighted were significantly associated with hypercholesterolemia. Conclusions The prevalence of diabetes mellitus, hypertension and hypercholesterolemia in adults living with HIV in this study was considerably high, with most of these diseases newly identified through active screening in the survey. These findings strongly suggest that screening of non-communicable diseases should be integrated into routine HIV care in Cambodia.
... A structured questionnaire was developed based on standardized and validated tools adapted from previous studies on mental health among HIV key populations, including people who use drugs [21,40,42,43]. We also conducted a questionnaire validation workshop participated by representatives from communities, NGOs, development partners, and national programs working on HIV and harm reduction programs in Cambodia. ...
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Background: People who use drugs are at a disproportionately higher risk of mental disorders due to prolonged exposure to psychosocial challenges. However, studies on mental health among people who use drugs in resource-constrained countries are scarce. This study sheds light on the prevalence and correlates of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Methods: We conducted this cross-sectional study in 12 provinces in 2017. The Respondent Driven Sampling method was adapted to recruit 1677 people who used drugs for face-to-face interviews using a structured questionnaire. Psychological distress was measured using the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). A total score of GHQ-12>2 indicated high psychological distress. We performed a multiple logistic regression analysis to examine factors associated with psychological distress. Results: The mean age of the participants was 28.6 years (SD= 7.8). Of the total, 41.9% had high psychological distress – 49.7% in women and 37.3% in men. We included 1598 participants in the multiple logistic regression analysis. The adjusted odds of having high psychological distress was significantly higher among participants who were 25-34 years old (AOR 1.30, 95% CI 1.01-1.70) and 35 years and above (AOR 1.68, 95% CI 1.19-2.35), had been to a drug rehabilitation center (AOR 2.06, 95% CI 1.48-2.86), had been insulted by family members (AOR 2.09, 95% CI 1.62-2.70), and had been sexually harassed/abused by someone when they were growing up (AOR 1.80, 95% CI 1.38-2.36). The odds of having high psychological distress was significantly lower among participants who were male (AOR 0.53, 95% CI 0.41-0.69), lived in own dwelling (AOR 0.56, 95% CI 0.41-0.77), reported injecting as the mode of the first drug use (AOR 0.56, 95% CI 0.34-0.91), and had someone taking care of when getting sick (AOR 0.68, 95% CI 0.47-0.99). Conclusions: This study documents a high prevalence of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Intervention programs that attempt to address mental health problems among people who use drugs in resource-limited settings should be gender- and age-sensitive and target more marginalized subpopulations. Mental health services can be integrated into HIV and harm-reduction programs for people who use drugs.
... A structured questionnaire was developed based on standardized and validated tools adapted from previous studies on mental health among HIV key populations, including people who use drugs [21,[40][41][42]. We also conducted a questionnaire validation workshop participated by representatives from communities, NGOs, development partners, and national programs working on HIV and harm reduction in Cambodia. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background People who use drugs are at a disproportionately higher risk of mental disorders due to prolonged exposure to psychosocial challenges. However, studies on mental health among people who use drugs in resource-constrained countries are scarce. This study sheds light on the prevalence and correlates of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Methods We conducted this cross-sectional study in the capital city and 11 provinces in 2017. The Respondent Driven Sampling method was adapted to recruit 1677 people who used drugs for face-to-face interviews using a structured questionnaire. Psychological distress was measured using the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). A total score of GHQ-12 > 2 indicated high psychological distress. We performed a multiple logistic regression analysis to identify factors associated with psychological distress. Results We included 1598 participants in the analyses, with a mean age of 28.6 years (SD = 7.8). Of the total, 42% had high psychological distress – 50% in women and 37% in men. The adjusted odds of having high psychological distress were significantly higher among participants who were 25–34 years old and 35 years and above, had been to a drug rehabilitation center, had been insulted by family members, and had been sexually harassed/abused by someone when they were growing up. The odds of having high psychological distress were significantly lower among participants who were male, lived in their own dwelling, reported injecting as the mode of the first drug use, and had someone taking care of them when they got sick. Conclusions This study documents a high prevalence of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Intervention programs that attempt to address mental health problems among people who use drugs in resource-limited settings should be gender- and age-sensitive and target more marginalized subpopulations. Mental health services can be integrated into HIV and harm-reduction programs for people who use drugs.
... A structured questionnaire was developed based on standardized and validated tools adapted from previous studies on mental health among HIV key populations, including people who use drugs [21,[40][41][42]. We also conducted a questionnaire validation workshop participated by representatives from communities, NGOs, development partners, and national programs working on HIV and harm reduction in Cambodia. ...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: People who use drugs are at a disproportionately higher risk of mental disorders due to prolonged exposure to psychosocial challenges. However, studies on mental health among people who use drugs in resource-constrained countries are scarce. This study sheds light on the prevalence and correlates of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Methods: We conducted this cross-sectional study in the capital city and 11 provinces in 2017. The Respondent Driven Sampling method was adapted to recruit 1677 people who used drugs for face-to-face interviews using a structured questionnaire. Psychological distress was measured using the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). A total score of GHQ-12>2 indicated high psychological distress. We performed a multiple logistic regression analysis to identify factors associated with psychological distress. Results: We included 1598 participants in the analyses, with a mean age of 28.6 years (SD= 7.8). Of the total, 42% had high psychological distress – 50% in women and 37% in men. The adjusted odds of having high psychological distress were significantly higher among participants who were 25-34 years old and 35 years and above, had been to a drug rehabilitation center, had been insulted by family members, and had been sexually harassed/abused by someone when they were growing up. The odds of having high psychological distress were significantly lower among participants who were male, lived in their own dwelling, reported injecting as the mode of the first drug use, and had someone taking care of them when they got sick. Conclusions: This study documents a high prevalence of psychological distress among people who use drugs in Cambodia. Intervention programs that attempt to address mental health problems among people who use drugs in resource-limited settings should be gender- and age-sensitive and target more marginalized subpopulations. Mental health services can be integrated into HIV and harm-reduction programs for people who use drugs.
... Similar methods, tools, and procedures were used for both surveys. Details of the surveys have been published elsewhere [14][15][16]. ...
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Background In Cambodia, despite great successes in the fight against HIV, challenges remain to eliminating new HIV infections and addressing sexual reproductive health (SRH) issues in key populations including female entertainment workers (FEWs). To address these issues, the Sustainable Action against HIV and AIDS in Communities (SAHACOM) project has been implemented since late 2009 using a community-based approach to integrate HIV and SRH services. This study evaluates the impact of the SAHACOM on sexual and healthcare-seeking behaviors among FEWs in Cambodia. Methods A midterm and endpoint comparison design was utilized. Midterm data were collected in early 2012, and endpoint data were collected in early 2014. A two-stage cluster sampling method was used to randomly select 450 women at midterm and 556 women at endpoint for face-to-face interviews. Results Compared to women at midterm, women at endpoint were significantly less likely to report having sexual intercourse in exchange for money or gifts in the past three months (OR = 2.1, 95 % CI = 1.6-2.7). The average number of commercial sexual partners in the past three months also decreased significantly from 5.5 (SD = 13.3) at midterm to 3.6 (SD = 13.9) at endpoint (p = 0.03). However, women at endpoint were significantly less likely to report always using condom when having sexual intercourse with clients in exchange for money or gifts (OR = 2.6, 95 % CI = 1.5-4.5). Regarding sexually transmitted infections (STIs), women at endpoint were significantly less likely to report having an STI symptom in the past three months (OR = 1.8, 95 % CI = 1.4-2.3) and more likely to seek treatment for the most recent STI symptom (OR = 1.6, 95 % CI = 1.1-1.9). Furthermore, women at endpoint were significantly more likely to be currently using a contraceptive method (OR = 1.4, 95 % CI = 1.1-1.8) and less likely to report having an induced abortion (OR = 1.4, 95 % CI = 1.1-1.7) during the time working as a FEW. Conclusions The overall findings of the study indicate that the SAHACOM is effective in reducing sexual risk behaviors and improving the access to SRH care services among FEWs in Cambodia. However, several unfavorable findings merit attention.
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Background Multi-month dispensing (MMD) is the mainstay mechanism for clinically stable people living with HIV in Cambodia to refill antiretroviral therapy (ART) every three to six months. However, less frequent ART dispensing through the community-based ART delivery (CAD) model could further reduce the clients’ and health facilities' burden. While community-based services have been recognized as an integral component of HIV response in Cambodia, their role and effectiveness in ART delivery have yet to be systematically assessed. This study aims to evaluate the CAD model's effectiveness on the continuum of care and treatment outcomes for stable people living with HIV in Cambodia.Methods We will conduct this quasi-experimental study in 20 ART clinics across the capital city and 10 provinces between May 2021 and April 2023. Study sites were purposively selected based on the availability of implementing partners, the number of people living with HIV each clinic serves, and the accessibility of the clinics. In the intervention arm, approximately 2,000 stable people living with HIV will receive ART and services from the CAD model. Another 2000 stable people living with HIV in the control arm will receive MMD—a standard care model for stable people living with HIV. The primary outcomes will be retention in care, viral load suppression, and the healthcare providers’ work burden. The secondary endpoints will include the model’s cost-effectiveness, quality of life, mental health, social support, stigma, and discrimination. We will compare the outcome indicators within each arm at baseline, midline, and endline using descriptive and inferential statistics. We will evaluate the differences between the intervention and control arms using the difference-in-differences method. We will perform economic evaluations to determine if the intervention is cost-effective.DiscussionThis study will build the evidence base for future implementation and scale-up of CAD model in Cambodia and other similar settings. Furthermore, it will strengthen engagements with community stakeholders and further improve community mobilization, a vital pillar of the Cambodian HIV response.Trial registrationClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04766710. Registered 23 February 2021
Article
Vibriosis is the most common bacterial diseases and brings great economic loss on aquaculture. Vibrio parahaemolyticus (V. parahaemolyticus), a gram-negative bacterium, has been identified as one main pathogens of Vibriosis. The pathogenic mechanism of V. parahaemolyticus is not entirely clear now. In our study, a model of V. parahaemolyticus infection of green-spotted puffer fish (Tetraodon nigroviridis) was established. T. nigroviridis were injected intraperitoneally (i.p.) with 200 μL of V. parahaemolyticus (8 × 10(10) CFU/mL). V. parahaemolyticus infection caused 64% mortality and infected some organs of T. nigroviridis. Histopathology studies revealed V. parahaemolyticus infection induced tissue structural changes, including adipose hollow space in the liver. Immunohistochemistry showed V. parahaemolyticus were present in infected tissue such as liver, head kidney and spleen. In livers of T. nigroviridis infected by V. parahaemolyticus, the alkaline phosphatases (ALP) activity first gradually increased and then backed to normal level, a trend that was on the contrary to the expression profile of the miR-29b. Quantitative real-time PCR analysis showed that the expression level of TLR1, TLR2, TLR5, TLR9, TLR21, NOD1, NOD2 and IL-6 in response to V. parahaemolyticus infection decreased compared to that of non-infected fish. The establishment of the T. nigroviridis model of V. parahaemolyticus infection further confirmed V. parahaemolyticus spreads through the blood circulation system primary as an extracellular pathogen. Meanwhile, liver is an important target organ when infected by V. parahaemolyticus. miR-29b in liver was involved in the progress of liver steatosis during V. parahaemolyticus infection. Moreover, V. parahaemolyticus infection in vivo may have an effect of immunosuppression on host.
Technical Report
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The 2016 Integrated Behavioral and Biological Survey (FEWIBBS 2016) was designed to determine a national prevalence estimate for HIV and syphilis as well as related behaviors among FEW in Cambodia. This study provides further evidence to confirm whether Cambodia is on track towards meeting the goals in the fight against HIV, and whether the country’s “3.0” (Three Zeroes) goal will be realized by 2020.
Article
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Background: Donor funding for HIV/AIDS services is declining in Cambodia, and domestic resources need to be mobilized to sustain and expand these services. However, the cost of delivering HIV/AIDS services is not well studied in Cambodia. This study aims to assess the costs of delivering HIV/AIDS services, identify the major components of costs, and sources of funding. Methods: Four of the six highest HIV burden provinces were selected at random for this study. Within each province, four health centers and two hospitals were selected for detailed data collection. A mix of top-down and bottom-up methods were used to assess the costs for HIV testing and antiretroviral therapy (ART) from the provider perspective. We assessed the differences in the quantity and prices of inputs between health facilities of the same type to identify cost-drivers. Results: The average cost per visit for HIV testing was $8.92 at health centers and $14.03 at referral hospitals. Differences in the number of visits per staff were the primary determinant of differences in the cost per visit. First-line ART costed about $250 per patient per year, and the number of patients per staff was an important cost driver. Second-line ART costed from $500 to $716 per patient per year, on average, across the types of facilities, with the quantity and mix of second-line antiretroviral drugs being an important cost driver. Inpatient care at referral and provincial hospitals in total represented less than 2 percent of costs of outpatient ART. Discussion: Costs are similar to neighboring countries, but over 50% of the costs of ART are financed by donors. Cambodia now is scaling up social health insurance coverage; the data from this study could serve as one input when setting reimbursement rates for HIV/AIDS services to help ensure that providers are adequately reimbursed for their services.
Article
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Background A large number of men who have sex with men (MSM) and people living with HIV/AIDS (PLHA) are underserved despite increased service availability from government facilities while many community based organizations (CBOs) are not involved. We aimed to assess the feasibility and effectiveness of the task shifting from government facilities to CBOs in China. Methods HIV preventive intervention for MSM and follow-up care for PLHA were shifted from government facilities to CBOs. Based on ‘cash on service delivery’ model, 10 USD per MSM tested for HIV with results notified, 82 USD per newly HIV cases diagnosed, and 50 USD per PLHA received a defined package of follow-up care services, were paid to the CBOs. Cash payments were made biannually based on the verified results in the national web-based HIV/AIDS information system. Findings After task shifting, CBOs gradually assumed preventive intervention for MSM and follow-up care for PLHA from 2008 to 2012. HIV testing coverage among MSM increased from 4.1% in 2008 to 22.7% in 2012. The baseline median CD4 counts of newly diagnosed HIV positive MSM increased from 309 to 397 cells/µL. HIV tests among MSM by CBOs accounted for less than 1% of the total HIV tests in Nanjing but the share of HIV cases detected by CBOs was 12.4% in 2008 and 43.6% in 2012. Unit cost per HIV case detected by CBOs was 47 times lower than that by government facilities. The coverage of CD4 tests and antiretroviral therapy increased from 71.1% and 78.6% in 2008 to 86.0% and 90.1% in 2012, respectively. Conclusion It is feasible to shift essential HIV services from government facilities to CBOs, and to verify independently service results to adopt ‘cash on service delivery’ model. Services provided by CBOs are cost-effective, as compared with that by government facilities.
Article
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Combination antiretroviral therapy (ART) has significantly increased survival among HIV-positive adults in the United States (U.S.) and Canada, but gains in life expectancy for this region have not been well characterized. We aim to estimate temporal changes in life expectancy among HIV-positive adults on ART from 2000-2007 in the U.S. and Canada. Participants were from the North American AIDS Cohort Collaboration on Research and Design (NA-ACCORD), aged ≥20 years and on ART. Mortality rates were calculated using participants' person-time from January 1, 2000 or ART initiation until death, loss to follow-up, or administrative censoring December 31, 2007. Life expectancy at age 20, defined as the average number of additional years that a person of a specific age will live, provided the current age-specific mortality rates remain constant, was estimated using abridged life tables. The crude mortality rate was 19.8/1,000 person-years, among 22,937 individuals contributing 82,022 person-years and 1,622 deaths. Life expectancy increased from 36.1 [standard error (SE) 0.5] to 51.4 [SE 0.5] years from 2000-2002 to 2006-2007. Men and women had comparable life expectancies in all periods except the last (2006-2007). Life expectancy was lower for individuals with a history of injection drug use, non-whites, and in patients with baseline CD4 counts <350 cells/mm(3). A 20-year-old HIV-positive adult on ART in the U.S. or Canada is expected to live into their early 70 s, a life expectancy approaching that of the general population. Differences by sex, race, HIV transmission risk group, and CD4 count remain.
Article
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Background Substantial falls in the mortality of people living with HIV (PLWH) have been observed since the introduction of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in sub-Saharan Africa. However, access and uptake of ART have been variable in many countries. We report the excess deaths observed in PLWH before and after the introduction of ART. We use data from five longitudinal studies in Malawi, South Africa, Tanzania, and Uganda, members of the network for Analysing Longitudinal Population-based HIV/AIDS data on Africa (ALPHA). Methods Individual data from five demographic surveillance sites that conduct HIV testing were used to estimate mortality attributable to HIV, calculated as the difference between the mortality rates in PLWH and HIV-negative people. Excess deaths in PLWH were standardized for age and sex differences and summarized over periods before and after ART became generally available. An exponential regression model was used to explore differences in the impact of ART over the different sites. Results 127,585 adults across the five sites contributed a total of 487,242 person years. Before the introduction of ART, HIV-attributable mortality ranged from 45 to 88 deaths per 1,000 person years. Following ART availability, this reduced to 14–46 deaths per 1,000 person years. Exponential regression modeling showed a reduction of more than 50% (HR =0.43, 95% CI: 0.32–0.58), compared to the period before ART was available, in mortality at ages 15–54 across all five sites. Discussion Excess mortality in adults living with HIV has reduced by over 50% in five communities in sub-Saharan Africa since the advent of ART. However, mortality rates in adults living with HIV are still 10 times higher than in HIV-negative people, indicating that substantial improvements can be made to reduce mortality further. This analysis shows differences in the impact across the sites, and contrasts with developed countries where mortality among PLWH on ART can be similar to that of the general population. Further research is urgently needed to establish why the different impacts on mortality were observed and how the care and treatment programmes in these countries can be more effective in reducing mortality further.
Article
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Introduction: HIV stigma and discrimination are major issues affecting people living with HIV in their everyday lives. In Thailand, a project was implemented to address HIV stigma and discrimination within communities with four activities: (1) monthly banking days; (2) HIV campaigns; (3) information, education and communication (IEC) materials and (4) ‘‘Funfairs.’’ This study evaluates the effect of project interventions on reducing community-level HIV stigma. Methods: A repeated cross-sectional design was developed to measure changes in HIV knowledge and HIV-related stigma domains among community members exposed to the project. Two cross-sectional surveys were implemented at baseline (respondent n 560) and endline (respondent n 560). T-tests were employed to assess changes on three stigma domains: fear of HIV infection through daily activity, shame associated with having HIV and blame towards people with HIV. Baseline scales were confirmed at endline, and each scale was regressed on demographic characteristics, HIV knowledge and exposure to intervention activities. Results: No differences were observed in respondent characteristics at baseline and endline. Significant changes were observed in HIV transmission knowledge, fear of HIV infection and shame associated with having HIV from baseline to endline. Respondents exposed to three specific activities (monthly campaign, Funfair and IEC materials) were less likely to exhibit stigma along the dimensions of fear (3.8 points lower on average compared to respondents exposed to none or only one intervention; 95% CI: 7.3 to 0.3) and shame (4.1 points lower; 95% CI: 7.7 to 0.6), net of demographic controls and baseline levels of stigma. Personally knowing someone with HIV was associated with low fear and shame, and females were less likely to possess attitudes of shame compared to males. Conclusions: The multivariate linear models suggest that a combination of three interventions was critical in shifting community level stigma monthly campaign, Funfair and IEC materials. This is especially important given Thailand’s new national AIDS strategy to reduce HIV-related stigma and discrimination by half by 2016. Knowing which interventions to invest in for HIV stigma reduction is crucial for country-wide expansion and scale-up of intervention activities.
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Background: We report effectiveness of an HIV-prevention intervention delivered by community health workers (CHWs) in Mombasa, Kenya, to PLHIV who have not initiated or who have discontinued ART—an often difficult-to-reach population because they fall outside the ambit of health care and prevention services. Methods: A 2-arm cohort study assessed a structured risk-reduction intervention involving at least 4 one-to-one counseling sessions and personalized support. The control group received standard prevention services. CHWs recruited treatment-naïve people living with HIV (PLHIV) or those who had previously taken antiretroviral drugs. Data were analyzed using a Propensity Score Matched (PSM)-sample to control for baseline differences between the groups. Results: 634 PLHIV were recruited and followed for 6 months. Median age was 35 years, and 74.3% were female. Participants in the intervention group reported reduced risky sexual behaviors both at endline compared with baseline and compared with the control group. At endline, in the PSM analysis, participants in the intervention arm were less likely than participants in the control group to report unprotected sex with a spouse (Odds Ratio [OR] = 0.08, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.03-0.24), and they reported fewer unprotected sex acts (12.3% versus 46.0%, respectively; OR = 0.16, 95% CI = 0.09-0.29; P<0.001). Further, 92.4% of participants in the intervention group reported zero unsafe sex acts (with partners of negative or unknown HIV status) compared with 70.8% in the control group (P<0.001), and more participants in the intervention arm were receiving ART (34.3% versus 12.7%, respectively; P<0.001). Conclusion: CHWs effectively reached PLHIV who had never received or who had discontinued ART, and they delivered a risk-reduction intervention that led to declines in reported sexual risk behaviors, as well as to increases in ART uptake. A scaled-up intervention warrants consideration.
Article
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A qualitative assessment was made of service provider and user perceptions of the quality of integrated reproductive health services established through a pilot intervention in Cambodia. The intervention aimed to promote pregnant women's HIV testing and general utilization of reproductive health facilities as well as improve the follow-up of HIV-positive women and exposed infants through strengthened referral and operational linkages amongst health facilities/services and community-based support interventions for PLHIV. The study was conducted in one operational district where the intervention was piloted and for comparative purposes in a district where integrated services had yet to be implemented. Service providers in the pilot district reported improved collaboration and coordination of services, more effective referral, and the positive impact of improved proximity of HIV testing through integrated local level facilities. Community-based support teams for PLHIV embraced their expanded role, were valued by families receiving their assistance, and were understood to have had an important role in referral, PMTCT follow-up and countering PLHIV stigmatization; findings which underscore the potential role of community support in integrated service provision. Challenges identified included stigmatization of PLHIV by health staff at district hospital level and a lack of confidence amongst non-specialized health staff when managing deliveries by HIV-positive women, partly due to fear of HIV transmission.
Article
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To assess the evidence for a differential effect of positive prevention interventions among individuals infected and not infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in developing countries, and to assess the effectiveness of interventions targeted specifically at people living with HIV. We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of papers on positive prevention behavioural interventions in developing countries published between January 1990 and December 2006. Standardized methods of searching and data abstraction were used. Pooled effect sizes were calculated using random effects models. Nineteen studies met the inclusion criteria. In meta-analysis, behavioural interventions had a stronger impact on condom use among HIV-positive (HIV+) individuals (odds ratio, OR: 3.61; 95% confidence interval, CI: 2.61-4.99) than among HIV-negative individuals (OR: 1.32; 95% CI: 0.77-2.26). Interventions specifically targeting HIV+ individuals also showed a positive effect on condom use (OR: 7.84; 95% CI: 2.82-21.79), which was particularly strong among HIV-serodiscordant couples (OR: 67.38; 95% CI: 36.17-125.52). Interventions included in this review were limited both in scope (most were HIV counselling and testing interventions) and in target populations (most were conducted among heterosexual adults or HIV-serodiscordant couples). Current evidence suggests that interventions targeting people living with HIV in developing countries increase condom use, especially among HIV-serodiscordant couples. Comprehensive positive prevention interventions targeting diverse populations and covering a range of intervention modalities are needed to keep HIV+ individuals physically and mentally healthy, prevent transmission of HIV infection and increase the agency and involvement of people living with HIV.
Article
Advances in HIV care have resulted in increasing numbers of HIV patients receiving antiretroviral therapy and achieving viral control. This has led to a focus on the biomedical aspects of care, leaving the data on psychological and social problems relatively neglected; in fact they have never before been systematically reviewed. If present and unmanaged, psychological and social problems are associated with unnecessary suffering and non-adherence to medication, with potentially serious clinical and public health consequences.
Article
Income generation interventions, such as microfinance or vocational skills training, address structural factors associated with HIV risk. However, the effectiveness of these interventions on HIV-related outcomes in low- and middle-income countries has not been synthesized. The authors conducted a systematic review by searching electronic databases from 1990 to 2012, examining secondary references, and hand-searching key journals. Peer-reviewed studies were included in the analysis if they evaluated income generation interventions in low- or middle-income countries and provided pre-post or multi-arm measures on behavioral, psychological, social, care, or biological outcomes related to HIV prevention. Standardized forms were used to abstract study data in duplicate and study rigor was assessed. Of the 5218 unique citations identified, 12 studies met criteria for inclusion. Studies were geographically diverse, with six conducted in sub-Saharan Africa, three in South or Southeast Asia, and three in Latin America and the Caribbean. Target populations included adult women (N = 6), female sex workers/bar workers (N = 3), and youth/orphans (N = 3). All studies targeted females except two among youth/orphans. Study rigor was moderate, with two group-randomized trials and two individual-randomized trials. All interventions except three included some form of microfinance. Only a minority of studies found significant intervention effects on condom use, number of sexual partners, or other HIV-related behavioral outcomes; most studies showed no significant change, although some may have had inadequate statistical power. One trial showed a 55% reduction in intimate partner violence (adjusted risk ratio 0.45, 95% confidence interval 0.23-0.91). No studies measured incidence/prevalence of HIV or sexually transmitted infections among intervention recipients. The evidence that income generation interventions influence HIV-related behaviors and outcomes is inconclusive. However, these interventions may have important effects on outcomes beyond HIV prevention. Further studies examining not only HIV-related outcomes but also causal pathways and intermediate variables, are needed. Additional studies among men are also needed.
Article
Poverty and limited availability of health facilities are major barriers to health care in resource-poor countries. For people living with HIV (PLHIV), these factors are compounded by social stigma and decreased mobility, making delivery of public health services a greater challenge. In 2003, the international development organization FHI (formerly known as Family Health International and now known as FHI 360) collaborated with the Ethiopian government, local non-governmental organizations and traditional burial societies (Idirs) to implement community and home-based care interventions for PLHIV in Addis Ababa and 13 other major cities. Programme activities included capacity building, care and support, stigma reduction, resource mobilization, support of orphans and vulnerable children, and income generation through community savings and loans groups. Programme results from 2003 to 2010 were evaluated using a quasi-experimental design with an intervention group (PLHIV who received community and home-based care programme services) and a control group (PLHIV who did not receive programme interventions). Propensity score matching was used to select matched intervention and control pairs for analysis. McNemar and Wilcoxon signed-ranks tests were used to determine outcomes and impact. Findings from routine monitoring data and a population survey showed that individuals who received the integrated community and home-based care services from Idirs reported significantly more savings, better social relations, more independence and better environments for PLHIV. Programme clients were also shown to have known their HIV status longer than the control respondents. However, a higher percentage of control respondents reported not having had an opportunistic infection in the past 6 months. We conclude that volunteer-based community organizations can be empowered to deliver and sustain health interventions for PLHIV. We also conclude that targeting the multiple needs of PLHIV enables holistic improvements in the quality of life and socio-economic conditions of PLHIV.
Article
HIV-positive individuals are more likely to be diagnosed with major depressive disorder than HIV-negative individuals. Depression can precede diagnosis and be associated with risk factors for infection. The experience of illness can also exacerbate depressive episodes and depression can be a side effect to treatment. A systematic understanding of which interventions have been tested in and are effective with HIV-seropositive individuals is needed. This review aims to provide a comprehensive understanding of evaluated interventions related to HIV and depression and provide some insight on questions of prevalence and measurement. Standard systematic research methods were used to gather quality published papers on HIV and depression. From the search, 1015 articles were generated and hand searched resulting in 90 studies meeting adequacy inclusion criteria for analysis. Of these, 67 (74.4%) were implemented in North America (the US and Canada) and 14 (15.5%) in Europe, with little representation from Africa, Asia and South America. Sixty-five (65.5%) studies recruited only men or mostly men, of which 31 (35%) recruited gay or bisexual men. Prevalence rates of depression ranged from 0 to 80%; measures were diverse and rarely adopted the same cut-off points. Twenty-one standardized instruments were used to measure depression. Ninety-nine interventions were investigated. The interventions were diverse and could broadly be categorized into psychological, psychotropic, psychosocial, physical, HIV-specific health psychology interventions and HIV treatment-related interventions. Psychological interventions were particularly effective and in particular interventions that incorporated a cognitive-behavioural component. Psychotropic and HIV-specific health psychology interventions were generally effective. Evidence is not clear-cut regarding the effectiveness of physical therapies and psychosocial interventions were generally ineffective. Interventions that investigated the effects of treatments for HIV and HIV-associated conditions on depression generally found that these treatments did not increase but often decreased depression. Interventions are both effective and available, although further research into enhancing efficacy would be valuable. Depression needs to be routinely logged in those with HIV infection during the course of their disease. Specific data on women, young people, heterosexual men, drug users and those indiverse geographic areas are needed. Measurement of depression needs to be harmonized and management into care protocols incorporated.
Article
The impact of antiretroviral therapy (ART) on sexual risk behavior and HIV transmission among HIV-infected persons in Africa is unknown. To assess changes in risky sexual behavior and estimated HIV transmission from HIV-infected adults after 6 months of ART. A prospective cohort study was performed in rural Uganda. Between May 2003 and December 2004 a total of 926 HIV-infected adults were enrolled and followed in a home-based ART program that included prevention counselling, voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) for cohabitating partners and condom provision. At baseline and follow-up, participants' HIV plasma viral load and partner-specific sexual behaviors were assessed. Risky sex was defined as inconsistent or no condom use with partners of HIV-negative or unknown serostatus in the previous 3 months. The rates of risky sex were compared using a Poisson regression model and transmission risk per partner was estimated, based on established viral load-specific transmission rates. Six months after initiating ART, risky sexual behavior reduced by 70% [adjusted risk ratio, 0.3; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.2-0.7; P = 0.0017]. Over 85% of risky sexual acts occurred within married couples. At baseline, median viral load among those reporting risky sex was 122 500 copies/ml, and at follow-up, < 50 copies/ml. Estimated risk of HIV transmission from cohort members declined by 98%, from 45.7 to 0.9 per 1000 person years. Providing ART, prevention counseling, and partner VCT was associated with reduced sexual risk behavior and estimated risk of HIV transmission among HIV-infected Ugandan adults during the first 6 months of therapy. Integrated ART and prevention programs may reduce HIV transmission in Africa.
Article
Promoting the secondary prevention of HIV transmission is essential. An intervention. aimed at increasing condom use by partners. was delivered to HIV positive women attending a Brazilian clinic. It included educational advice delivered by doctors. and unlimited access to free condoms. A pre-post design was used: 170 control group women were recruited. the intervention was implemented. and 170 intervention group women were then enrolled. All were interviewed at baseline. 30 and 60 days. After training. doctors were more likely to provide advice on condom use. Reported use increased by 8.8% points (a 14.2% increase) in the intervention group after 30 days. and by 5.7 points (9.5%) in the control group (P = 0.52). The reasons why the intervention failed to reach a significant effect are discussed. as are the possible Public Health impact of a 14.2% increase in condom use among HIV positive women.
Cambodia takes MDG prize for excellence in its AIDS response
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