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AIDS Care. 2014;26(7):927-30. doi: 10.1080/09540121.2013.869538. Epub 2013 Dec 24.

Retention in psychiatric treatment in a Canadian sample of HIV-positive women.

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a Department of Psychiatry , Mount Sinai Hospital , Toronto , ON , Canada.


Major depressive disorder (MDD) is more prevalent in people living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) than in the general population. This is a concern as MDD is associated with decreased adherence to HIV treatment and contributes significantly to disability and reduced quality of life. Several studies report that, while prevalence is high, people living with HIV often do not access or follow-up with treatment of MDD. This paper examined adherence to psychiatric treatment in women living with HIV in Ontario, Canada. One-third of women referred to a psychiatry outpatient clinic did not attend their first appointment. Over half of the women who did attend came for only one or two appointments and were lost to follow-up. Potential contributing factors were examined. Approaches to enhancing psychiatric care for women living with HIV are discussed.


HIV; adherence; major depressive disorder; mental health; women

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