Evaluation of quality of life and associated factors among HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy in North West region of Cameroon
Background: There is evidence that Quality of Life (QoL) of People Living with HIV/AIDS (PLHIV) has a significant role in ART retention, treatment adherence, and survival. As a result, QoL is becoming increasingly important for policy- makers, program implementers, and researchers. However, factors associated with QoL, in a culturally diverse country like Cameroon are unknown.
Objective: We aimed to assess the QoL of PLHIV on ART and assess the extent to which physical, psychosocial, environ- mental, and spiritual factors drive QoL.
Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted among 394 PLHIV aged >21 in North-West Cameroon from April to July 2019. Data were collected using WHO-QOL BREF questionnaire. Descriptive statistics, bivariate, and multivariate linear regression analyses were performed.
Results: Majority (34.5%) of participants were in the age range of 41-50, with 73% females. The average QoL of the re- spondents was “good” with mean score of 3.57 on 5 and 71.4% agreed to have satisfactory QoL. Bivariate regression anal- yses revealed that all six proposed predictors were significantly associated with QoL. Psychological factors made the greatest impact (β = 0.213; p<0.003), followed by physical factors (β = 0.19; p<0.001).
Conclusion: PLHIV fairly agreed to have good QoL. The QoL was driven by mainly psychological and physical factors and not level of independence. However, the mean score perceptions for the investigated domains were low. Mental health ser- vices should consider these predictors when designing strategies to improve the QoL of PLHIV. While this study provides useful insights, other possible drivers of QoL among PLHIV should be investigated.
Keywords: Quality of life and associated factors; HIV patients; antiretroviral therapy; Cameroon.
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