Problems of HIV patients in their use of antiretrovirals ; a case study of Nairobi district
Musembi, Jane Itumbi
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The major purpose of this study was to investigate the problems of HIV patients in their use of antiretrovirals in Nairobi District. The study also aimed at finding out which of these challenges are most severe as seen by the HIV patients, as well as finding out if there is a gender which is worst hit by these challenges and the age at which this occurs. The central idea was to critically analyse the counseling implications of the findings. A descriptive survey was used in the study. The study subjects consisted of 130 people living with HIV, who are on antiretrovirals. The sample was all from Nairobi district. Random sampling procedure was used to derive the sample. A questionnaire was used to collect data. Both descriptive and statistical analyses were done. The t-test, ANOVA and the Chi-square were done to test if there were any significant differences between variables. It was discovered that the cost and access to ARVs is still a major concern to PLHA. It was also discovered that side effects such as skin rash, anxiety about the use of ARVs, changes in physical image and desertion by friends were also of major concern to PLHA. There were other side effects given, the most frequent being despair, anger and irritability. Women were also found to be more challenged by problems arising from ARV use than men. The implications of the results were found to be of particular interest for effective practice of counseling of people living with HIV/AIDS in the Kenyan context. This is so because the findings can be used to construct effective pre-ARV and post-ARV counseling programmes for people living with HIV. Recommendations were made for the counselors, government, NGOs and Donors, pharmaceutical companies as well as for future researchers.