The Impact of Prevention of Mother to Child Transmission of HIV Programme In the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja
Background: Human Immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) is spreading rapidly among the world\'s children especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. Mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) is the major route of acquired this disease in children. Prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV programme is aimed at reducing HIV/AIDS in children to its barest minimum. The aim of the present study is to determine the impact of PMTCT programme on HIV exposed infants in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja Method: A six month prospective study of 160 HIV exposed infants attending Paediatric Outpatient Special Treatment Clinic (POSTC) of the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital (UATH) was carried out. Exposed infants were categorized based on their participation in the PMTCT programme. Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test was used for early diagnosis of HIV infection in the study infants. Results: Overall transmission rate of HIV infection among the study subjects was 33.7%. Transmission was found to occur in 6.7% of infants who participated in PMTCT programme and in 68.6% of those not involved in the programme, P<0.001. For infants in the full programme, transmission occurred in 2.7% of cases and in 25.0% among those involved partially, P<0.05. Conclusion: The study shows that transmission of HIV infection to exposed infants is high in FCT, Abuja. Transmission was however found to be significantly lower in infants who participated in PMTCT programme and even much lower in those involved in the full programme. It is therefore recommended that there is an urgent need to establish full PMTCT programme in many health care facilities across the nation as a major way of reducing paediatric HIV/AIDS in the country.
Keywords:HIV/AIDS; Prevention of mother-to-child transmission programme, exposed infants, transmission rate.
Nigerian Journal of Medicine Vol. 17 (2) 2008: pp. 193-199