Association of unmet needs for support services with medication use and adherence among HIV-infected individuals in the southeastern United States.
Unmet needs for services, such as housing and psychiatric treatment, are relatively common among HIV-infected individuals; however, the effects of different types of unmet needs on health-care outcomes are not well understood. This study describes unmet psychosocial needs and their relationship with health-care outcomes among individuals receiving HIV care in the southeastern US (n=526). We used multivariate logistic regression to examine the association of seven categories of unmet needs with HIV medication use and adherence. Most participants (84.5%) reported at least one service need in the past year. Nearly half (47%) of participants with service needs reported that at least one need was not met. Participants with one or more unmet needs were less likely to be taking any HIV medications (p = 0.007) and reported poorer medication adherence (p=0.013). The specific unmet needs for benefits (including Social Security, health insurance and prescription coverage) (p = 0.006) and a support group (p=0.040) were associated with being less likely to be taking any HIV medications. Unmet need for mental health-related counseling was associated with poorer medication adherence (p=0.003). Study findings regarding the high level of unmet need and the association of unmet need with poorer outcomes illustrate the importance of interventions to address these needs.
Reif, S; Whetten, K; Lowe, K; Ostermann, J
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