Risk Factors Associated with Virologic Non – Suppression Among Children on the Intensive Adherence Program
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The overall focus of this study was to analyze and understand what risk factors (social, economic and demographic) were associated with VLNS among children age 5 - 14. The study was guided by two specific objectives one of which were to determine the socio – economic factors associated with virological non – suppression among children and to determine the proximate factors associated with virological non – suppression among children. Chi square, bivariate and multivariable logistic regression in STATA 14 were used in finding results. From a sample of 9,243 children between the age 5 - 14, only 3,973 children were not suppressed compared to 5,270 who were reported suppressed to the virus in the past 12 months within the time of the data collection implying a relatively higher suppression rate of 52.02%. Chi square analysis revealed that VLNS is dependent on the following characteristics i.e., mother’s education level, father’s education level, mother still alive, father still alive, sex of the respondent, age group of the respondent, wealth status, main daily care giver, health facility and HIV knowledge whose P values were less than the given significance level of 0.05. From logistic regression analysis, we found that children whose fathers’ education level (primary literates and secondary literates), V mothers’ education level (secondary literates), mother still alive, father still alive are significant with VLNS and have lower odds of experiencing VLNS compared to their corresponding reference categories. Children with the following characteristics; Mothers’ education level (primary literates), female children, children in the age bracket 10 – 14, having a relative as their main daily care giver and children whose health provider is the government were significant with VLNS but have higher odds of experiencing VLNS compared to their corresponding reference categories. From the results drawn, there is a relatively higher suppression rate since it’s above average. The suppression levels were low among children whose main daily care giver was a relative in comparison to those whose main daily care giver was a parent. This implies that biological parents play a vital role towards the suppression levels of their children. Based on the findings, I recommend that children living with HIV should be educated about the natural history of the disease, with emphasis on the potential for recurrent episodes, asymptomatic viral shedding, and the attendant risks of sexual transmission.