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      A hybrid mobile HIV testing approach for population-wide HIV testing in rural East Africa: an observational study

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          Despite large investments in HIV testing, only 45% of HIV-infected persons in sub-Saharan Africa are estimated to know their status. Optimal methods for maximizing population-level testing remain unknown. We sought to demonstrate the effectiveness at achieving population-wide testing coverage of a hybrid mobile HIV testing approach.


          From 2013–2014, we enumerated 168,772 adult (≥15 years) residents of 32 communities in Uganda (N=20), and Kenya (N=12) using a door-to-door census. “Stable” residence was defined as living in community for ≥6 months over the past year. In each community we performed 2-week multi-disease community health campaigns (CHC) that included HIV testing, counseling, and referral to care if HIV-infected; CHC non-participants were approached for home-based testing (HBT) over 1–2 months. We determined population HIV testing coverage, and predictors of testing via HBT (vs. CHC) and non-testing.


          HIV testing was achieved in 89% of stable adult residents (131,307/146,906). HIV prevalence was 9.6% (13,043/136,033 stable and non-stable adults); median CD4 + T-cell count was 514 cells/μL (IQR: 355–703). Among stable adults tested, 43% (56,106/131,307) reported no prior testing. Among HIV-infected adults, 38% (4,932/13,043) were unaware of their status. Among stable CHC attendees, 99.5% (104,635/105,170) accepted HIV testing. Of stable adults tested, 80% (104,635/131,307, range: 60–93%) tested via CHCs. In multivariable analyses of stable adults, predictors of non-testing included male gender (risk ratio [RR]: 1.52, 95% CI: 1.48–1.56), single marital status (RR: 1.70, 95% CI: 1.66–1.75), Kenyan residence (RR: 1.46, 95% CI: 1.41–1.50, vs. Ugandan), and out-of-community migration for ≥1 month in past year (RR: 1.60, 95% CI: 1.53–1.68). Testing was more common among farmers (RR: 0.73, 95% CI: 0.67–0.79) and adults with primary education (RR: 0.84, 95% CI: 0.80–0.89).


          High HIV testing coverage was achieved in rural Ugandan and Kenyan communities using a hybrid, mobile approach of multi-disease CHCs followed by HBT. This approach allowed for flexibility at the community and individual level in reaching testing coverage goals. Men and mobile populations remain challenges for universal testing.

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          Most cited references 34

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          Antiretroviral therapy that reduces viral replication could limit the transmission of human immunodeficiency virus type 1 (HIV-1) in serodiscordant couples. In nine countries, we enrolled 1763 couples in which one partner was HIV-1-positive and the other was HIV-1-negative; 54% of the subjects were from Africa, and 50% of infected partners were men. HIV-1-infected subjects with CD4 counts between 350 and 550 cells per cubic millimeter were randomly assigned in a 1:1 ratio to receive antiretroviral therapy either immediately (early therapy) or after a decline in the CD4 count or the onset of HIV-1-related symptoms (delayed therapy). The primary prevention end point was linked HIV-1 transmission in HIV-1-negative partners. The primary clinical end point was the earliest occurrence of pulmonary tuberculosis, severe bacterial infection, a World Health Organization stage 4 event, or death. As of February 21, 2011, a total of 39 HIV-1 transmissions were observed (incidence rate, 1.2 per 100 person-years; 95% confidence interval [CI], 0.9 to 1.7); of these, 28 were virologically linked to the infected partner (incidence rate, 0.9 per 100 person-years, 95% CI, 0.6 to 1.3). Of the 28 linked transmissions, only 1 occurred in the early-therapy group (hazard ratio, 0.04; 95% CI, 0.01 to 0.27; P<0.001). Subjects receiving early therapy had fewer treatment end points (hazard ratio, 0.59; 95% CI, 0.40 to 0.88; P=0.01). The early initiation of antiretroviral therapy reduced rates of sexual transmission of HIV-1 and clinical events, indicating both personal and public health benefits from such therapy. (Funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and others; HPTN 052 number, NCT00074581.).
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              Risk factors, barriers and facilitators for linkage to antiretroviral therapy care: a systematic review.

              To characterize patient and programmatic factors associated with retention in care during the pre-antiretroviral therapy (ART) period and linkage to ART care. Systematic literature review. An electronic search was conducted on MEDLINE, Global Health, Google Scholar and conference databases to identify studies reporting on predictors, barriers and facilitators of retention in care in the pre-ART period, and linkage to care at three steps: ART-eligibility assessment, pre-ART care and ART initiation. Factors associated with attrition were then divided into areas for intervention. Seven hundred and sixty-eight citations were identified. Forty-two studies from 12 countries were included for review, with the majority from South Africa (16). The most commonly cited category of factors was transport costs and distance. Stigma and fear of disclosure comprised the second most commonly cited category of factors followed by staff shortages, long waiting times, fear of drug side effects, male sex, younger age and the need to take time off work. This review highlights the importance of investigating interventions that could reduce transport difficulties. Decentralization, task-shifting and integration of services need to be expedited to alleviate health system barriers. Patient support groups and strategic posttest counselling are essential to assist patients deal with stigma and disclosure. Moreover, well tolerated first-line drugs and treatment literacy programmes are needed to improve acceptance of ART. This review suggests a combination of interventions to retain specific groups at risk for attrition such as workplace programmes for employed patients, dedicated clinic and support programmes for men and younger individuals.

                Author and article information

                Lancet HIV
                Lancet HIV
                The lancet. HIV
                4 February 2016
                26 January 2016
                March 2016
                01 March 2017
                : 3
                : 3
                : e111-e119
                [1 ]Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases and Global Medicine, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA
                [2 ]Makerere University - University of California Research Collaboration, Kampala, Uganda
                [3 ]Centre for Microbiology Research, Kenya Medical Research Institute, Nairobi, Kenya
                [4 ]Gillings School of Global Public Health, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA
                [5 ]Department of Biostatistics, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
                [6 ]University of California Berkeley School of Public Health, Berkeley, California, USA
                [7 ]Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, University of California San Francisco, San Francisco, California, USA
                [8 ]Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, Makerere University College of Health Sciences, Kampala, Uganda
                [9 ]Department of Medicine, Center for AIDS Prevention Studies, University of California San Francisco (UCSF), San Francisco, California, USA
                Author notes
                Corresponding author: Gabriel Chamie, MD, MPH, Assistant Professor of Medicine, UCSF Division of HIV, Infectious Diseases and Global Medicine, San Francisco General Hospital, UCSF Box 0874, San Francisco, CA 94143-0874, USA, Tel: 001-415-476-4082, ext 445, Gabriel.chamie@

                Full Professors


                This manuscript version is made available under the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license.



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