HIV/AIDS Tuberculosis: Specialist Clinic Service for HIV-Positive Mineworkers in South Africa Helps Prevent TB
March 2, 2004
Scientists in South Africa maintain that "Occupational settings offer an ideal opportunity to provide preventive health services for HIV-infected workers." According to S. Charalambous and colleagues at Aurum Health Research in Welkom, "A specialized clinic was established in a mining hospital in the Free State, South Africa, with the primary aim of delivering preventive therapy such as isoniazid to those at high risk of tuberculosis (individuals with HIV infection or silicosis), and cotrimoxazole to those at highest risk for opportunistic infections."Adapted from:
"The clinic design has taken regard of the importance of minimizing stigma, protecting confidentiality, monitoring potential side effects, supporting adherence and identification of prophylaxis failure," the study explained. "The clinic opened in April 1999 and, by August 2001, 1,773 patients had attended at least once; 1,762 are HIV-infected and 11 have silicosis. Of those with HIV infection, most were asymptomatic at their first visit."
"The clinic has achieved high acceptability: 99 percent of persons who were actively recruited to the service agreed to attend," the study said. "The number still attending after a median of 13 months from recruitment was 1,270 (72 percent) and only 48 (2.7 percent) have declined continued attendance. Most losses were due to termination of employment unrelated to a medical condition."
"The clinic has already been successfully replicated in two other regions of the mining health service in South Africa and provides a model for workplace HIV clinical services that could be used for implementation of further interventions such as antiretroviral therapy," the researchers concluded.
The report, "Feasibility and Acceptability of a Specialist Clinical Service for HIV-Infected Mineworkers in South Africa," appeared in AIDS Care -- Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV (2004;16(1):47-56).
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.