Factors for Low Uptake of Antiretroviral Therapy Among HIV Pregnant Women in Mbeya City Council, Tanzania

Lawrencia Dominick Mushi, Eileen A Mhando

Abstract


UNAIDS aimed to reach 90% antiretroviral therapy uptake among people living with HIV by 2015. Despite free provision of antiretroviral therapy to pregnant women living with HIV, the uptake remains low. This study describes views of pregnant women about low uptake of antiretroviral therapy among pregnant women living with HIV in Mbeya City Council.

The study used a descriptive cross-sectional design and applied mixed research approaches. 44 pregnant women on antiretroviral therapy and 12 health providers were conveniently selected. Four key informants were purposively selected. In-depth interviews with pregnant women and key informants; exit interviews with pregnant women; and observation of health providers were conducted. Audio tape recording from in-depth interviews was transcribed into Swahili to English. Social ecological framework was used in data coding based on individual, social and health service aspects then analysed using Atlas. ti 7. Quantitative data was analyzed in Excel spreadsheet, and presented using tables.

The findings from interviews and observations showed that the main individual factors (like treatment-related side effects and religious faith); social factors (like traditional medicine and lack of partner/husband support) and health service factors (like long waiting time and discrepancy in information given to clients during adherence counseling on antiretroviral therapy) were more likely to be associated with low uptake of antiretroviral therapy.

This study indicates that various factors at individual, social and health service levels were more likely to cause low uptake of ART. Reasons for discrepant information during counseling by providers remain a question which needs further research.


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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/jpag.v9i1.14337

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