Loss to follow up from HIV care among workers in the South African Clothing And Textile Workers Union in Ethekwini District, Kwazulu Natal
Ziqubu, Sibusisiswe Noluthando
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Background: Human Immune Deficiency Virus (HIV) is a public health challenge worldwide. Antiretroviral therapies (ART) are medications that treat HIV virus infection by suppressing the virus and stopping progression of HIV disease, and that improve quality of life. People initiated on ART need to adhere to their treatment for the rest of their lives. In 2016, there were 7,1 million people (age 15-49) in South Africa living with HIV, representing 19 % of the global HIV burden, with 56% of the adults on ART. Life expectancy of South Africans for both males and females improved between 2009 and 2011 because of ART treatment. People lost to follow up while on ART compromise their own health and the long term positive benefits of the ART regimen, and hence there is a growing emphasis to improve the retention of people who are already on treatment. Aim: This study was conducted examining HIV positive South African Clothing and Textile Workers Union (SACTWU) members who are currently on ART treatment and had previously been lost to follow up (LTFU) from ART care. The study aimed to explore factors associated with LTFU of clients on ART treatment and care among the South African Clothing and Textile Union members living with HIV and attending the SACTWU Worker Health Program Clinic.