|Type||Journal Article - Bulletin of the World Health Organization|
|Title||Universal combination antiretroviral regimens to prevent mother-to-child transmission of HIV in rural Zambia: a two-round cross-sectional study|
Objective To evaluate if a pilot programme to prevent mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
was associated with changes in early childhood survival at the population level in rural Zambia.
Methods Combination antiretroviral regimens were offered to pregnant and breastfeeding, HIV-infected women, irrespective of
immunological status, at four rural health facilities. Twenty-four-month HIV-free survival among children born to HIV-infected mothers
was determined before and after PMTCT programme implementation using community surveys. Households were randomly selected and
women who had given birth in the previous 24 months were asked to participate. Mothers were tested for HIV antibodies and children
born to HIV-infected mothers were tested for viral deoxyribonucleic acid. Multivariable models were used to determine factors associated
with child HIV infection or death.
Findings In the first survey (2008–2009), 335 of 1778 women (18.8%) tested positive for HIV. In the second (2011), 390 of 2386 (16.3%)
tested positive. The 24-month HIV-free survival in HIV-exposed children was 0.66 (95% confidence interval, CI: 0.63–0.76) in the first survey
and 0.89 (95% CI: 0.83–0.94) in the second. Combination antiretroviral regimen use was associated with a lower risk of HIV infection or
death in children (adjusted hazard ratio: 0.33, 95% CI: 0.15–0.73). Maternal knowledge of HIV status, use of HIV tests and use of combination
regimens during pregnancy increased between the surveys.
Conclusion The PMTCT programme was associated with an increased HIV-free survival in children born to HIV-infected mothers. Maternal
utilization of HIV testing and treatment in the community also increased.
|»||Zambia - Demographic and Health Survey 2007|