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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2015 Sep 1;70(1):e5-9. doi: 10.1097/QAI.0000000000000718.

Implementation and Operational Research: Reconstructing the PMTCT Cascade Using Cross-sectional Household Survey Data: The PEARL Study.

Author information

1
*University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC; †Centre for Infectious Disease Research in Zambia, Lusaka, Zambia; ‡Cameroon Baptist Health Convention Health Board, Bamenda, Cameroon; §University of Cape Town, Cape Town, South Africa; ‖INSERM, Centre INSERM U897, Bordeaux, France; ¶University of Bordeaux, ISPED, Centre INSERM U897, Bordeaux, France; #Programme PAC-CI, Abidjan, Cote d'Ivoire; **Zambian Ministry of Health, Lusaka, Zambia; and ††World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Given the ambitious targets to reduce pediatric AIDS worldwide, ongoing assessment of programs to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission (PMTCT) is critical. The concept of a "PMTCT cascade" has been used widely to identify bottlenecks in program implementation; however, most efforts to reconstruct the cascade have relied on facility-based approaches that may limit external validity.

METHODS:

We analyzed data from the PEARL household survey, which measured PMTCT effectiveness in 26 communities across Zambia, South Africa, Cote d'Ivoire, and Cameroon. We recruited women who reported a delivery in the past 2 years. Among mothers confirmed to be HIV infected at the time of survey, we reconstructed the PMTCT cascade with self-reported participant information. We also analyzed data about the child's vital status; for those still alive, HIV testing was performed by DNA polymerase chain reaction testing.

RESULTS:

Of the 976 eligible women, only 355 (36%) completed every step of the PMTCT cascade. Among the 621 mother-child pairs who did not, 22 (4%) reported never seeking antenatal care, 103 (17%) were not tested for HIV during pregnancy, 395 (64%) reported testing but never received their HIV-positive result, 48 (8%) did not receive maternal antiretroviral prophylaxis, and 53 (9%) did not receive infant antiretroviral prophylaxis. The lowest prevalence of infant HIV infection or death was observed in those completing the cascade (10%, 95% confidence interval: 7% to 12%).

CONCLUSIONS:

Future efforts to measure population PMTCT impact should incorporate dimensions explored in the PEARL study-including HIV testing of HIV-exposed children in household surveys-to better understand program effectiveness.

PMID:
26068722
PMCID:
PMC4773194
DOI:
10.1097/QAI.0000000000000718
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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