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ISSN: 2572-0805

HIV: Current Research
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Research Article

Participation in PLHIV Support Groups: Does it Enhance Behavioural Outcomes?

Simpson Tumwikirize1* and Sheila Mokoboto-Zwane2

1Family Health International, Maputo, Mozambique

2Department of Health Studies, University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa

*Corresponding Author:
Tumwikirize S
Family Health International
Maputo, Mozambique
Tel: + 258 824104281
E-mail: [email protected]

Received date May 30, 2016; Accepted date June 20, 2016; Published date June 27, 2016

Citation: Tumwikirize S, Mokoboto-Zwane S (2016) Participation in PLHIV Support Groups: Does it Enhance Behavioural Outcomes?. HIV Curr Res 1: 104. doi: 10.4172/2572-0805.1000104

Copyright: © 2016 Tumwikirize S, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

 

Abstract

The role of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in HIV prevention has generated hope for an AIDS-free generation but also interest in behavioural outcomes of people living with HIV (PLHIV). This is from the knowledge that the benefits of ART in terms of enhancing PLHIV health outcomes and preventing HIV transmission depend on PLHIV’s behaviours including sexual risk, disclosure, treatment adherence and retention. The purpose of this study was to examine whether PLHIV in Nigeria who participate in support group activities have different behavioural outcomes than those who do not. A cross-sectional design was used to compare stigma, disclosure, sexual risk behaviors and ART adherence rates of PLHIV who participate in support group activities and those who do not. Respondents were adult PLHIV enrolled in ART from January 1, 2010 to December 31, 2012. Study sites and respondents were selected using multistage probability sampling. Data were collected using a self-administered questionnaire from 1,676 respondents between February and May 2014. Data were analysed using STATA. Univariate analysis was carried out to generate descriptive statistics while Chi-square tests were used to examine if there was any association between participation in support group activities and PLHIV selected behavioral outcomes. PLHIV who participated in support group activities differed from those who did not in terms of HIV-related stigma (p =< 0.001), positive HIV status disclosure (p = 0.005), ART adherence (p = 0.021), and sexual risk behaviors (p = 0.045). PLHIV who participated in support group activities were more likely to have less internal HIV-related stigma, disclose their positive HIV status, adhere to ART and live less risky sexual lives. These findings suggest that PLHIV who participate in support group activities are more likely to adopt positive behaviors than those who do not.

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