Impact of antiretroviral therapy on risky sexual behaviour in people living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA) in Lusaka District of Zambia

Chilufya, Patrick Mukuka (2015-12)

Thesis (MPhil)--Stellenbosch University, 2015.


ENGLISH ABSTRACT: The aim of the study was to investigate to what extent the availability of antiretroviral treatment has influenced sexual risk behavior practices in people living with HIV and AIDS (PLWHA) in order to provide suggestions to improve HIV prevention messages. The study was conducted among adult HIV patients on ART aged 18 and above and affiliated to the Network of Zambian People Living with HIV/AIDS (NZP+) in Lusaka District. A purposive sampling method was used to select study units and a sample of 40 was selected. Data was collected from participants using a self-administered questionnaire. SPSS version 20 software computer package was used to analyze data. Chi- square was used to measure associations between dependent variables (risky sexual behavior and initiation of ART) and the independent variable (duration of time on ART). With the confidence interval set at 95%, the P value was used to ascertain the degree of significance by using the decision rule which rejects the null hypothesis if P value is equal or less than 0.05. The findings revealed that the participant's mean age was 2.8 ± 1.3 SD. More than half (68%, n=27) of the participants had adequate knowledge on HIV prevention while 90% (n=36) of participants had a good (positive) attitude towards ART. 82.5% (n=33) of the participants on ART had sexual intercourse in the last 6 month, and 21.2% (n=7) of these did not use a condom for secondary prevention. There was no significant correlation between being on ART and having sexual intercourse, condom usage or number of sexual partners OR (P value of 0.45 and 0.85), (P values 0.37 and 0.5) and (P value 0.34 and 0.57) respectively. In multivariable analysis, the majority of the respondents (35.5%, n=11) indicated that continued sensitization would improve HIV prevention messages to support communities affected. Few (29%, n=9) stated that: "promoting abstinence among the youths or use of a condom for those that are sexually active and intensifying VCT campaign would reduce HIV transmission" and 7% (n=2) of the respondents suggested that; "involving the families and communities affected, civic, religious, and traditional leaders to educate both the young and adult citizens in schools, colleges and churches to support PLWH and fight against HIV-related stigma and discrimination. Stellenbosch University iii A significant association was not found between an increase in risky sexual behavior or an upsurge in the occurrence of unprotected sex, initiation of ART and duration of being on ART. The majority (83%, n=15) of the respondents on ART for less than sixty months had protected sexual intercourse and 73% (n=11) on ART for sixty months and above also used protection. This association was statistically not significant (Chi-square value 2.95. P value > 0.05). However; other studies need to explore these subjective interpretations further.


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