African Journal of Social Work

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Institutional and personal factors influencing adherence to tuberculosis treatment among patients in Harare, Zimbabwe

Belamino K. Chikwaiwa, Vupenyu Dzingirai, Kefasi Nyikahadzoi, Simbarashe Rusakaniko


This study explores the influence of personal and institutional factors towards adherence to tuberculosis treatment among patients receiving treatment at Wilkins hospital and its catchment area. A qualitative research design was employed and information was elicited from respondents using focus group discussions, in-depth interviews and key informant interviews. Results from the study show that adherence to tuberculosis treatment is a function of institutional support and personal economic security. Fear of stigmatisation and the possibility of losing employment among employed patients negatively affects their adherence to treatment. In addition, availability of drugs, affordability of treatment,  professional work commitment, acceptance and empathy promotes treatment adherence. The study concluded that medical institutions must address the software side of treatment developing professionals within the curing industry to professionally and confidentially handle those presenting themselves for treatment with diseases that attract stigmatisation. It is recommended that medical institutions should be fully equipped and retooled to enable them to attend to those patients presenting themselves for treatment with infectious disease of social significance. This paper also recommends that discrimination of poor tuberculosis patients be abated through the provision of inclusive welfare support services to all needy patients with a view to promote adherence to treatment.

Key terms: Adherence, institutional, personal, treatment, tuberculosis, Zimbabwe

AJOL African Journals Online