Project Description

Adolescents living with HIV (ALHIV) have substantial challenges accessing and adhering to HIV care and antiretroviral therapy (ART). Researchers,including PATA´s Dr Daniella Mark, conducted a study to gather data on clinical service practices to support ALHIV-focused care in Asia using a 31-question survey for healthcare providers on care and treatment services, support for adherence and retention, and tracking of risk behaviors.

Published in Vulnerable Children and Youth Studies Volume 14, 2019 – Issue 2, the research found that ALHIV-specific services were offered by less than half of the respondent clinics, and included 22% with designated adolescent care providers, and 19% with adolescent clinic times. Transition preparation included how to navigate adult care services (82%) and communicate with new health providers (67%), and some used a multidisciplinary team of pediatric and adult providers to coordinate transition (35%). Their most commonly reported challenges in ALHIV care included socio-economic limitations impacting care uptake (e.g. transportation, food insecurity; 44%), difficulty supporting self-disclosure by the adolescent (44%), and poor ART adherence (42%). These study results highlight the variable scope of HIV care offered by pediatric HIV centers to ALHIV in Asia, as well as challenges with service delivery, social support, and engaging adult HIV providers in the transition preparation process.