Pattern of disease disclosure to patients in pediatric HIV clinic in a tertiary care center in Kerala

Priya S., Lathika Nayar, Purushothaman K. K.


Background: The pattern and rates of disclosure of HIV status to infected children may differ within a country, and among the states, based on the socioeconomic, cultural, and even health status. Understanding this pattern is important in the formulating guidelines of disclosure on their HIV diagnosis to children infected by HIV, and to design strategies for improvement of adherence. This study was proposed to study the pattern of disclosure of HIV status in children aged 6 to 17 years.

Methods: This cross sectional study was conducted for a year (2016-2017) at a Pediatric HIV clinic in Thrissur, Kerala. Participants for this study were 58 HIV-infected children in the age group of 6-17 years who were on ART, and their parents/caregivers.

Results: Among the 58 participants, only 25 (43.1%) were aware of their HIV status, either fully (17; 68%) or partially (8; 32%). Healthcare providers were more likely to disclose the status to the affected child. Majority of the participants (84%) had better compliance to therapy after disclosure and most of the children in the non-institutional group were more supportive towards their parents (50%) after disclosure. The factors that were associated with disclosure in the non-institutional group were age of the child and duration of therapy.

Conclusions: Children infected with HIV showed better adherence after complete disclosure. Rate of disclosure can be improved by reviewing the disclosure hurdles in our state so that intervention programs can be planned for improving the rate of disclosure.


Disease status, Pediatric HIV, Disclosure, Caregiver

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