Increased integrated testing for HIV, hepatitis C and sexually transmitted infections in health care facilities: results from the INTEGRATE Joint Action pilots in Lithuania, Romania and Spain

R Matulionytė, M L Jakobsen, V I Grecu, J Grigaitiene, T Raudonis, L Stoniene, M Olteanu, L de la Mora, D Raben, A K Sullivan

3 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

BACKGROUND: Indicator condition guided HIV testing is a proven effective strategy for increasing HIV diagnosis in health care facilities. As part of the INTEGRATE Joint Action, we conducted four pilot studies, aiming to increase integrated testing for HIV/HCV/HBV and sexually transmitted infections, by introducing and expanding existing indicator condition guided HIV testing methods.

METHODS: Pilot interventions included combined HIV/HCV testing in a dermatovenerology clinic and a clinic for addictive disorders in Lithuania; Increasing HIV testing rates in a tuberculosis clinic in Romania by introducing a patient information leaflet and offering testing for HIV/HCV/sexually transmitted infections to chemsex-users in Barcelona. Methods for implementing indicator condition guided HIV testing were adapted to include integrated testing. Testing data were collected retrospectively and prospectively. Staff were trained in all settings, Plan-do-study-act cycles frequently performed and barriers to implementation reported.

RESULTS: In established indicator conditions, HIV absolute testing rates increased from 10.6 to 71% in the dermatovenerology clinic over an 18 months period. HIV testing rates improved from 67.4% at baseline to 94% in the tuberculosis clinic. HCV testing was added to all individuals in the dermatovenerology clinic, eight patients of 1701 tested positive (0.47%). HBV testing was added to individuals with sexually transmitted infections with a 0.44% positivity rate (2/452 tested positive). The Indicator condition guided HIV testing strategy was expanded to offer HIV/HCV testing to people with alcohol dependency and chemsex-users. 52% of chemsex-users tested positive for ≥ 1 sexually transmitted infection and among people with alcohol dependency 0.3 and 3.7% tested positive for HIV and HCV respectively.

CONCLUSIONS: The four pilot studies successfully increased integrated testing in health care settings, by introducing testing for HBV/HCV and sexually transmitted infections along with HIV testing for established indicator conditions and expanding the strategy to include new indicators; alcohol dependency and chemsex. HCV testing of individuals with alcohol abuse showed high positivity rates and calls for further implementation studies. Methods used for implementing indicator condition guided HIV Testing have proven transferable to implementation of integrated testing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number845
JournalBMC Infectious Diseases
Volume21
Issue numberSuppl 2
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
ISSN1471-2334
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 Sept 2021

Keywords

  • Ambulatory Care Facilities
  • Delivery of Health Care
  • HIV Infections/diagnosis
  • Hepatitis C/diagnosis
  • Humans
  • Lithuania
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Romania
  • Sexually Transmitted Diseases/diagnosis
  • Spain
  • Viral hepatitis
  • HIV
  • Integrated testing
  • Sexually transmitted infections

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