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Starting treatment on the day of HIV diagnosis improves retention and viral suppression, Haiti study shows
Keith Alcorn, 2016-07-21 07:20:00

Interventions to improve linkage to care and retention in treatment which speed up the start of treatment or provide intensive support to people before starting treatment produce better retention in care than standard practices, researchers reported at the 21st International AIDS Conference (AIDS 2016) in Durban, South Africa, on Wednesday.

Starting HIV treatment on the day of diagnosis resulted in significantly better outcomes for people in Haiti, while a package of interventions including accelerated ART, CD4 counts at diagnosis and intensive support delivered in Swaziland resulted in significantly better linkage to care and retention after one year on ART, the studies showed.

A study conducted in San Francisco has shown that same-day treatment intitiation was acceptable to patients and succeeded in retaining people in care. There is still little information about the practicalities of same-day treatment initiation in low and middle-income settings.