Adherence to antiretroviral therapy, virologic failure and workload at the Rustenburg Provincial Hospital

N. O. Chabikuli, D. O. Datonye, J. Nachega, D. Ansong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Background: Adherence to antiretroviral therapy (ART) is a strong predictor of progression to AIDS and death. It remains the most important potentially alterable factor that determines treatment outcomes. Methods: The study is a cross-sectional survey of self-reported adherence to ART and associated factors. It included a randomly selected sample of 100 adult patients who began ART between June 2006 and December 2007. A modified Adult AIDS Clinical Trials Group questionnaire was used. The analysis compared self-reported adherence levels by factor and viral load test results. Results: Only 71% of patients had an adherence > 95%. Poor adherence was related to changes in daily routines (being away from home [21%] and busy with other things [17%]). All patients with symptoms suggestive of clinical depression had virologic failure. More unemployed patients (50.7%) had virologic failure than did employed patients (40%) (p = < 0.05). The clinic had a tenfold increase in patient enrolment and a ninefold decline in staff-to-patient ratio, and the proportion of patients lost to follow-up doubled in the preceding four years. Conclusion: Adherence to ART was poor. The capacity of the clinic to manage patients adequately has declined significantly. Decentralisation of ART services to primary health care facilities should be considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)350-355
Number of pages6
JournalSouth African Family Practice
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • ART
  • Adherence
  • HIV
  • Human resource
  • South Africa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Family Practice


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