ASSESSMENT OF THE EFFECTS OF PREVENTION OF MOTHER TO CHILD TRANSMISSION OF HIV (PMTCT) PROGRAMME ON MATERNAL AND CHILD HEALTH AT NNAMDI AZIKIWE UNIVERSITY TEACHING HOSPITAL (NAUTH) NNEWI

AUTHOR: DR. SIMEON ACHUNAM NWABUEZE

DEPARTMENT: COMMUNITY MEDICINE

AFFILIATION: NNAMDI AZIKIWE UNIVERSITY, AWKA

Mother to child transmission (MTCT) of HIV is a preventable route of HIV transmission in Nigeria. The federal government of Nigeria introduced the prevention of mother to child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV programme in NAUTH Nnewi in 2002. This study was carried out to assess the effects of the PMTCT services on the health of mothers and children who accessed these services in NAUTH Nnewi, SE Nigeria. This is a cross-sectional descriptive study. 288 mother-child pairs who had accessed the PMTCT services and attending the paediatric follow-up clinic were recruited into the study by asystematic sampling method using the daily clinic register of exposed babies. Data was collected using a structured interviewer-administered questionnaire and analyzed using SPSS version 16. A p-value <0.05 was considered significant. The mean age of all the respondents was 30+4.86 years. Most (89.2%) were married, 10.1% had less than secondary education while 4.2% had no formal education. 55.2% were traders while 18.4% were unemployed. Median parity was 2. Partner notification was 87.2%. 99% of the pregnancies was carried to term while mean birth weight was 3.02+0.49kg. Mother to child HIV transmission rate was 1%. Majority of the mothers had good knowledge of routes of HIV transmission. 99% of mothers identified MTCT as main mode of transmission. 93.4% did not perceive risk of transmission in homosexuals and bisexuals. 75.8% used contraceptive methods. 94.7% did not breastfeed while breastfeeding wasassociated with MTCT of HIV (X 2=9.16; p<0.02). Infant formula was associated with impaired baby’s current health status. Majority of mothers reported excellent health status. The PMTCT programme has resulted in good knowledge of routes of HIV transmission and modes of prevention of MTCT of HIV, low MTCT rate, high rate of contraceptive use and excellent health status among participating mothers and children.

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