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Open Forum Infect Dis. 2016 Dec 7;4(1):ofw248. doi: 10.1093/ofid/ofw248. eCollection 2017 Winter.

Improving Tuberculosis (TB) and Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) Treatment Monitoring in South Africa: Evaluation of an Advanced TB/HIV Course for Healthcare Workers.

Author information

1
International Training & Education Center for Health (I-TECH), Department of Global Health, University of Washington, Seattle.
2
I-TECH South Africa, Pretoria.
3
University of Witswatersrand, Centre for Rural Health, Johannesburg, South Africa.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

South Africa has dual epidemics of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and tuberculosis (TB). Nurse-focused training was combined with onsite mentoring for nurses to improve HIV and TB care. A pre-/postevaluation was conducted in 3 districts in South Africa to assess the effects of the course on clinical patient monitoring and integration of TB and HIV care.

METHODS:

Two cross-sectional, unmatched samples of patient charts at 76 primary healthcare facilities were collected retrospectively in 2014 to evaluate the impact of training on treatment monitoring. Proportions of HIV patients receiving a viral load test 6 months after initiating antiretroviral therapy (ART) and TB patients receiving end of intensive phase sputum testing were compared pre- and posttraining. Analysis of creatinine clearance testing and integration of TB and HIV care were also performed.

RESULTS:

Data were analyzed from 1074 pretraining and 1048 posttraining records among patients initiating ART and from 1063 pretraining and 1008 posttraining among patients initiating TB treatment. Documentation of a 6-month viral load test was 36.3%, and a TB test at end of intensive phase was 70.7%, and neither increased after training. Among patients with a viral load test, the percentage with viral load less than 50 copies/mL increased from 48.6% pretraining compared with 64.2% posttraining (P = .001). Integration of TB and HIV care such as isoniazid preventive therapy increased significantly.

CONCLUSIONS:

The primary outcome measures did not change after training. However, the evaluation documented many other improvements in TB and HIV care that may have been supported by the course.

KEYWORDS:

HIV; integration of care; tuberculosis.

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