Reaching the First 90 in Uganda: Predictors of Success in Contacting and Testing the Named Sexual Partners of HIV+ Index Clients in Kiboga District
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Assisted partner notification programs represent one strategy for targeted HIV testing and treatment of exposed individuals in high-risk populations. This study of a pilot Partner Services program in rural Uganda describes predictors of successful contact tracings and testing of partners of HIV+ individuals and possible barriers to contact. Partner contact tracing data was extracted from registers at seven Ministry of Health facilities between May and October 2016, to inform program implementation and scale up. A total of 464 HIV+ index clients named 660 sexual partners; 334/660 (51%) were contacted, 193/334 (58%) tested for HIV, and 61/193 (32%) tested HIV+. Current relationship status predicted contact [AOR = 0.23; (95% CI 0.15, 0.37), p < 0.0001] and testing [AOR = 0.19; (95% CI 0.09, 0.36), p < 0.0001]. Partner contact information type was associated with contact (p < 0.0001), and assisted disclosure with testing (p < 0.0001). Partner contact tracing is an effective means of identifying undiagnosed HIV infections.
KeywordsPartner services Assisted partner notification Disclosure Contact tracing Linkage to HIV care Uganda
This work was supported by the Office of the Global AIDS Coordinator (OGAC); President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR); the United States National Institutes of Health (NIH) Office of AIDS Research (OAR); and a supplement to Grant #D43TW000007-22S3 from the Fogarty International Center (FIC) of the NIH. This project was made possible by the Afya Bora Consortium Fellowship, which is supported by PEPFAR and the OAR of the U.S. NIH through funding to the University of Washington under Cooperative Agreement U91 HA06801 from the US Department of Health and Human Services, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) Global HIV/AIDS Bureau. Ugandan co-authors are employed at the Infectious Diseases Institute (IDI), and Makerere University College of Health Sciences, the site that hosted Katherine for the Afya Bora Consortium Global Health Leadership fellowship. The authors acknowledge the staff and participants of the Kiboga District Partner Services program that provided the platform for analysis of these data to inform the scale up of partner services. The authors acknowledge Damalie Nakanjako’s group leader award from MUII-plus with funding from Wellcome Trust grant 107742/Z/15/z, that support capacity building activities at Makerere University College of Health Sciences. The DELTAS Africa Initiative is an independent funding scheme of the African Academy of Sciences (AAS)’s Alliance for Accelerating Excellence in Science in Africa (AESA) and supported by the New Partnership for Africa’s Development Planning and Coordinating Agency (NEPAD Agency) with funding from the Wellcome Trust and the UK government. The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of AAS, NEPAD Agency, Wellcome Trust or the UK.
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflicts of interest
The authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.
Permission to analyze the program data was given by Kiboga District Health Authorities employed by the Uganda Ministry of Health. Ethical approval to analyze and disseminate Partner Services program data, and waiver of written informed consent were obtained from the Makerere University School of Medicine Research and Ethics Committee.
Informed verbal consent was obtained from all participants and/or their parent/guardian prior to participation in the Partner Services program.
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