Involvement of family/household members of HIV positive women in family centered PMTCT : a study of a level one hospital in Limpopo province, South Africa

Idolor, Felix Okeroghene (2012-03)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2012.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Increasingly, HIV/AIDS is being viewed as a family disease. The underlying conditions that favour the transmission and spread of the epidemic are more often to be found in weaknesses, vulnerabilities and breakdowns of the family/household unit. The immediate impact of the epidemic is also seen within family/household units. Increasingly also, the family is being viewed as the immediate environment for combating the epidemic. Hence HIV/AIDS interventions are increasingly being designed and implemented in a family centred way. In family centred interventions, the needs of HIV affected families can be dealt with in a holistic way and not just attending to their health care needs alone. Family centred prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS exploits contact with the pregnant woman attending maternal services as an entry point to bring whole families and households including male partners into HIV/AIDS interventions. This study carried out in Seshego Hospital, a level one district Hospital in Limpopo province was aimed at finding out to what extent health care workers providing maternal care engaged families/households including male partners of HIV positive women in prevention of mother to child transmission of HIV (PMTCT). A survey of 34 HIV positive women from ages 19 to 43 years attending maternal care services was carried out using a structured questionnaire. The study reveals that 52.9% of study participants reported disclosure of their HIV status to a member of the family while 47.1% had not disclosed Admission of disclosure to male partners by the study population was 64.7% while 35.3% of denied disclosure of their HIV status to their male partners. The study further revealed that 53% of the study participants admitted that their male partners had been invited to participate in PMTCT while 47% said that their male partner had not been invited participate. An average of 23% of survey partners reported that their male partners participated in PMTCT either by taking an HIV test, being on antiretroviral medication themselves or by use of condoms for prevention of HIV transmission while in 77% of survey participants the male partners was reported not to be involved in any of these ways. Overall participation of a member of the family/household other than male partner in PMTCT was reported to be 14% while in 86% of survey participants reported no involvement of a household/family member in PMTCT. The low level of engagement of the families/households of HIV positive pregnant women including their male partners in PMTCT found in this study implies that this important entry point into HIV prevention, treatment and care programmes is not being fully exploited.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: MIV/ Vigs word toenenmend as ‘n familie-siekte beskou. Die onderliggende toestande wat die verspreiding van die siekte bevoordeel kan dikwels gevind word in ‘n familie-struktuur wat onder druk is. Hierdie studie is gedoen by die Seshego Hospitaal in Limpopo. Die doel van die studie was om te bepaal in watter mate die tussenkoms van en voorligting deur gesondheidsorgwerkers aan families of huishoudings die oordrag van moeder-na-kind MIV kan verminder. ‘n Opname is onder 34 MIV-positiewe vrouens tussen die ouderdomme 19 en 43 jaar gedoen en ‘n gestruktureerde vraelys is gebruik. Die studie toon aan dat daar ‘n baie klein invloed deur die inmenging van gesondheidsorgwerkers op moeder-na-kind oordraging van MIV is. Voorstelle word aan die hand gedoen om hierdie situasie aan te spreek.

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