The connection between serious life events, anti-retroviral adherence, and mental health among HIV-positive individuals in the Western Cape, South Africa.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

South Africa currently has one of the world's largest rates of HIV infection. A majority of the existing research focuses on individual risk behaviors that lead to increased risk of HIV contraction while also acknowledging the importance of the social and contextual determinants of HIV transmission and disease progression. Therefore, the present study aims to understand the ways in which experience of serious life events increases risk of both adherence lapse and mental illness in HIV-positive populations. Strikingly, our findings suggest that HIV-positive individuals are approximately 24 times as likely to have an anti-retroviral adherence lapse and are nearly four times likely to report mental health issues if they have experienced a recent serious life event. Implications of our results include the incorporation of socially relevant assessment tools and the development of interventions that address social and contextual issues for effecting adherence behaviors.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Brinkley-Rubinstein, L; Chadwick, C; Graci, M

Published Date

  • January 2013

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 25 / 12

Start / End Page

  • 1581 - 1585

PubMed ID

  • 23656514

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1360-0451

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0954-0121

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1080/09540121.2013.793270


  • eng