Laura Goy Humanities and Social Science
Barriers to Retention and Treatment for HIV+ Malawian Patients with Drug Failure
Since the rollout of antiretroviral therapy (ART) in 2004, Malawi has made tremendous strides in the fight against HIV and has almost achieved the global targets for diagnosis and treatment set by UNAIDS. However, emerging drug resistance threatens the progress made in Malawi and other countries facing limited access to resources and technology. Alternative drug regimens are available in Malawi, but clinics are extremely inefficient at switching patients to these life-saving drugs. As a result, people with untreated resistance can develop AIDS and transmit drug-resistant HIV to others. To address these issues, I will spend this summer working with Partners in Hope (PIH), a nonprofit organization that operates HIV clinics across Malawi, in order to improve the clinical experiences and outcomes of patients who develop drug failure. I will explore the following question: What are the causes of low retention rates and inefficient linkages to services within PIH clinics? To answer this question, I will conduct a qualitative study in four PIH clinics in Southern Malawi by interviewing and observing providers and patients.