HIV care and treatment for children in resource-limited settings.
Although efforts to combat the HIV epidemic have focused on the perinatal reduction of HIV transmission, many children are still being infected with HIV in resource-limited settings. Access to HIV care, cotrimoxazole and antiretroviral therapy (ART) for HIV-infected children has greatly improved in recent years, and has proven to be very effective in reducing mortality in all age categories. Many challenges remain to be resolved, such as the retention in care of children born to HIV-infected mothers, the lack of pharmacokinetic data on ART in malnourished children, optimum timing of ART, treatment and diagnosis of concomitant tuberculosis, and the effects of ART and HIV on the child's development. In the long term, treatment success might be negated due to lower rates of viral suppression in children and the accumulation of resistance mutations. Evidenced-based comprehensive care models should allow for decentralizing care up to the level of the community, allowing larger numbers of children to receive HIV care.
Callens, SFJ; McKellar, MS; Colebunders, R
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