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Identifying HIV most-at-risk groups in Malawi for targeted interventions. A classification tree model
Authors: Jacques B O Emina, Nyovani Madise, Mathias Kuepie, Eliya M Zulu
Source: BMJ Open, 3:e002459. doi:10.1136/bmjopen-2012-002459
Topic(s): HIV/AIDS
Country: Africa
Published: APR 2013
Abstract: Objectives: To identify HIV-socioeconomic predictors as well as the most-at-risk groups of women in Malawi. Design: A cross-sectional survey. Setting: Malawi Participants: The study used a sample of 6395 women aged 15–49 years from the 2010 Malawi Health and Demographic Surveys. Interventions: N/A Primary and secondary outcome measures: Individual HIV status: positive or not. Results: Findings from the Pearson ÷2 and ÷2 Automatic Interaction Detector analyses revealed that marital status is the most significant predictor of HIV. Women who are no longer in union and living in the highest wealth quintiles households constitute the most-at-risk group, whereas the less-at-risk group includes young women (15–24) never married or in union and living in rural areas. Conclusions: In the light of these findings, this study recommends: (1) that the design and implementation of targeted interventions should consider the magnitude of HIV prevalence and demographic size of most-at-risk groups. Preventive interventions should prioritise couples and never married people aged 25–49 years and living in rural areas because this group accounts for 49% of the study population and 40% of women living with HIV in Malawi; (2) with reference to treatment and care, higher priority must be given to promoting HIV test, monitoring and evaluation of equity in access to treatment among women in union disruption and never married or women in union aged 30–49 years and living in urban areas; (3) community health workers, households-based campaign, reproductive-health services and reproductive-health courses at school could be used as canons to achieve universal prevention strategy, testing, counselling and treatment.