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J Acquir Immune Defic Syndr. 2006 Jul;42(3):314-21.

Home visits to improve adherence to highly active antiretroviral therapy: a randomized controlled trial.

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Yale University School of Nursing, New Haven, CT 06536, USA.



Few rigorously designed studies have documented the efficacy of interventions to improve medication adherence among patients prescribed highly active antiretroviral. Data are needed to justify the use of limited resources for these programs.


A 2-arm, randomized, controlled trial evaluated the efficacy of a community-based, home-visit intervention to improve medication adherence. Participants were 171 HIV-infected adults prescribed a minimum of 3 antiretroviral agents. The majority had a past or current history of substance abuse. Subjects were randomly assigned to receive home visits for 1 year or usual care. Medication adherence was assessed with Medication Event Monitoring stem caps at 3-month intervals from randomization through 3 months after the conclusion of the intervention.


A larger proportion of subjects in the intervention group demonstrated adherence greater than 90% compared with the control group at each time point after baseline. The difference over time was statistically significant (Extended Mantel-Haenszel test: 5.80, P = 0.02). A statistically significant intervention effect on HIV-RNA level or CD4 cell count was not seen, but there was a statistically significant association between greater than 90% adherence and an undetectable HIV-RNA over time (P < 0.03).


Home visits from a nurse and a community worker were associated with medication adherence greater than 90% among a cohort of socially vulnerable people living with HIV/AIDS in northeastern United States.

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