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In what ways do communities support optimal antiretroviral treatment in Zimbabwe

Scott, Kerry, Campbell, Catherine, Madenhire, C., Skovdal, M., Nyamukapa, C. and Gregson, S. (2013) In what ways do communities support optimal antiretroviral treatment in Zimbabwe. Health Promotion International, 29 (4). ISSN 0957-4824

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Identification Number: 10.1093/heapro/dat014


Little research has been conducted on how pre-existing indigenous community resources, especially social networks, affect the success of externally imposed HIV interventions. Antiretroviral treatment (ART), an externally initiated biomedical intervention, is being rolled out across sub-Saharan Africa. Understanding the ways in which community networks are working to facilitate optimal ART access and adherence will enable policymakers to better engage with and bolster these pre-existing resources. We conducted 67 interviews and eight focus group discussions with 127 people from three key population groups in Manicaland, eastern Zimbabwe: healthcare workers, adults on ART and carers of children on ART. We also observed over 100 h of HIV treatment sites at local clinics and hospitals. Our research sought to determine how indigenous resources were enabling people to achieve optimal ART access and adherence. We analysed data transcripts using thematic network technique, coding references to supportive community networks that enable local people to achieve ART access and adherence. People on ART or carers of children on ART in Zimbabwe report drawing support from a variety of social networks that enable them to overcome many obstacles to adherence. Key support networks include: HIV groups; food and income support networks; home-based care, church and women's groups; family networks; and relationships with healthcare providers. More attention to the community context in which HIV initiatives occur will help ensure that interventions work with and benefit from pre-existing social capital.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2013 The Author
Divisions: LSE Health
Psychological and Behavioural Science
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine
Date Deposited: 13 Jul 2012 15:37
Last Modified: 20 Oct 2021 02:01

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