An Estimation of Mortality Risks among People Living with HIV in Karnataka State, India

Learnings from an Intensive HIV/AIDS Care and Support Programme

Citation: Javalkar P, Prakash R, Isac S, Washington R, Halli SS (2016) An Estimation of Mortality Risks among People Living with HIV in Karnataka State, India: Learnings from an Intensive HIV/AIDS Care and Support Programme. PLoS ONE 11(6): e0156611. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0156611
Published: June 2, 2016

Abstract
Red_Ribbon.svgBackground: In Indian context, limited attempts have been made to estimate the mortality risks among people living with HIV (PLHIV). We estimated the rates of mortality among PLHIV covered under an integrated HIV-prevention cum care and support programme implemented in Karnataka state, India, and attempted to identify the key programme components associated with the higher likelihood of their survival.
Methods: Retrospective programme data of 55,801 PLHIV registered with the Samastha programme implemented in Karnataka state during 2006–11 was used. Kaplan-Meier survival methods were used to estimate the ten years expected survival probabilities and Cox-proportional hazard model was used to examine the factors associated with risk of mortality among PLHIV. We also calculated mortality rates (per 1000 person-year) across selected demographic and clinical parameters.
Results: Of the total PLHIV registered with the programme, about nine percent died within the 5-years of programme period with an overall death rate of 38 per 1000 person-years. The mortality rate was higher among males, aged 18 and above, among illiterates, and those residing in rural areas. While the presence of co-infections such as Tuberculosis leads to higher mortality rate, adherence to ART was significantly associated with reduction in overall death rate. Cox proportional hazard model revealed that increase in CD4 cell counts and exposure to intensive care and support programme for at least two years can bring significant reduction in risk of death among PLHIV [(hazard ratio: 0.234; CI: 0.211–0.260) & (hazard ratio: 0.062; CI: 0.054–0.071), respectively] even after adjusting the effect of other socio-demographic, economic and health related confounders.
Conclusion: Study confirms that while residing in rural areas and presence of co-infection significantly increases the mortality risk among PLHIV, adherence to ART and improvement in CD4 counts led to significant reduction in their mortality risk. Longer exposure to the intervention contributed significantly to reduce mortality among PLHIV.

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