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The success of universal treatment access for all people living with HIV and aspirations for an AIDS-free generation depend on high adherence in individuals initiating treatment during early-stage HIV infection.

ART Adherence Study Supports Case for Universal HIV Treatment

The success of universal treatment access for all people living with HIV and aspirations for an AIDS-free generation depend on high adherence in individuals initiating treatment during early-stage HIV infection. However, adherence may be difficult in the absence of illness and associated social support. This study followed 869 people initiating HIV treatment in Uganda and South Africa over one year. Participants included men and women (with and without pregnancy), comparing those with early versus late-stage HIV infection. In Uganda, average adherence was high (~89%) among all groups of participants. In South Africa, average adherence was reasonably high in men and non-pregnant women (~76%), but significantly lower in pregnant women (~37%) and individuals with late-stage HIV disease (~52%). These findings indicate that early-stage HIV disease is not a barrier to adherence, thus supporting the universal rollout of HIV treatment. Adherence support, however, is needed for pregnant women and individuals presenting late for care in some settings.

Click here to read the full article published in the Journal of the International AIDS Society.