In the Netherlands, immigrant people living with HIV (PLWH) have poorer psychological and treatment outcomes than Dutch PLWH. This cross-sectional field study examined risk factors for non-adherence to combination Antiretroviral Therapy (cART) among immigrant PLWH. First and second generation immigrant PLWH attending outpatient clinics at two HIV-treatment centers in Rotterdam were selected for this study. Socio-demographic and clinical characteristics for all eligible participants were collected from an existing database. Trained interviewers subsequently completed questionnaires together with consenting participants (n = 352) to gather additional data on socio-demographic characteristics, psychosocial variables, and self-reported adherence to cART. Univariable and multivariable logistic regression analyses were conducted among 301 participants who had used cART 6 months prior to inclusion. Independent risk factors for self-reported non-adherence were (I) not having attended formal education or only primary school (OR = 3.25; 95%CI: 1.28-8.26, versus University), (II) experiencing low levels of social support (OR = 2.56; 95%CI: 1.37-4.82), and (III) reporting low treatment adherence self-efficacy (OR = 2.99; 95%CI: 1.59-5.64). Additionally, HIV-RNA >50 copies/ml and internalized HIV-related stigma were marginally associated (P<0.10) with non-adherence (OR = 2.53; 95%CI: 0.91-7.06 and OR = 1.82; 95%CI: 0.97-3.43). The findings that low educational attainment, lack of social support, and low treatment adherence self-efficacy are associated with non-adherence point to the need for tailored supportive interventions. Establishing contact with peer immigrant PLWH who serve as role models might be a successful intervention for this specific population.,
Department of Internal Medicine

Been, S., van de Vijver, D., Nieuwkerk, P., Brito, I. (Inês), Stutterheim, J., Bos, A., … Verbon, A. (2016). Risk factors for non-adherence to cART in immigrants with HIV living in the Netherlands: Results from the Rotterdam ADherence (ROAD) project. PLoS ONE, 11(10). doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0162800