WHO South-East Asia Journal of Public Health
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ORIGINAL RESEARCH
Year : 2012  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 268-278

Knowledge of antiretrovirals in preventing parentto-child-transmission of HIV: a cross-sectional study among women living with HIV in Tamil Nadu, India


1 MPH, Senior Research Fellow, Knowledge for Health Initiative, AIDS Prevention and Control Project- Voluntary Health Services, Chennai, India
2 MBBS, MSc, Project Director, AIDS Prevention and Control project- Voluntary Health Services, Chennai, India
3 PhD, Program Manager– Research, AIDS Prevention and Control project- Voluntary Health Services, Chennai, India

Correspondence Address:
Saumya Rastogi
MPH, Senior Research Fellow, Knowledge for Health Initiative, AIDS Prevention and Control Project- Voluntary Health Services, Chennai
India
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DOI: 10.4103/2224-3151.207023

PMID: 28615553

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Background: India is amongst the top 10 countries in the world currently with the highest burden of pregnant women living with HIV and nearly 80% of these women do not receive antiretroviral (ARV) drugs to prevent parent-to-child transmission (PTCT) of HIV. The aim of this study was to estimate HIV-infected women’s awareness on PTCT and knowledge of ARVs as a measure to prevent PTCT. Methods: This was a descriptive, cross-sectional study in which a total of 986 women with HIV aged 18 years and above were interviewed in 13 high HIV prevalence districts of Tamil Nadu, South India. Data were analysed using descriptive, bivariate and multivariate methods. Results: Nearly one fifth (18.8%) of the women with HIV had not heard of PTCT and 40% did not know that ARVs could prevent PTCT. In addition, 39.3% were not aware of the timing of PTCT; 50.4% reported intrauterine and intrapartum and 13.7% mentioned breastfeeding period as the possible timings of PTCT of HIV. Multivariate analysis showed that single/never married women had lower knowledge of PTCT. Also, those who had undergone a prior training on reproductive and child health (RCH) and those who discussed RCH issues with their partners were more likely to have higher knowledge. Conclusion: Considering the risk of HIV transmission from HIV-infected women to their children, the knowledge level of PTCT among them is low. Appropriate strategies to generate awareness among women with HIV need be introduced to help them make informed decisions.


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