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Quality of Life Change in Zimbabwean Patients at Western versus Traditional African Medical Care Sites Tonya N. Taylor, Curtis Dolezal, Susan Tross, and.

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Presentation on theme: "Quality of Life Change in Zimbabwean Patients at Western versus Traditional African Medical Care Sites Tonya N. Taylor, Curtis Dolezal, Susan Tross, and."— Presentation transcript:

1 Quality of Life Change in Zimbabwean Patients at Western versus Traditional African Medical Care Sites Tonya N. Taylor, Curtis Dolezal, Susan Tross, and William C. Holmes HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies June 25, 2009

2 Background 22 million people living with HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa have little to no access to life saving antiretroviral treatment (ART). –only 28% of those needing ART in the region are currently covered. Structural and socioeconomic constraints prevent many from accessing HIV prevention, testing, and treatment. Consequently many delay in their engagement into treatment

3 Background cont. To remedy these challenges, many have called for community-based approaches, including the use of traditional healers Traditional Healing is an integral part of African culture and society and is the primary system of health care for more than 80% of rural Africa. Many Africans with HIV turn to traditional healing throughout their disease course. There are no data on the potential role of Traditional Healing on the delivery of HIV care (or ART rollout) in Africa or other resource poor settings

4 Objectives Objectives To explore differences in HIV-related quality of life (QoL) with varying medical care sites. We examined self-perceived QoL changes over 1 month in a presumptively HIV+ patients from traditional African care (TAC) and western medical care (WC) sites using the HAT-QoL and the MOS-HIV We hypothesized that in individuals seeking TAC would significantly improve in QoL compared to those seeking WC We conjectured that the mental health benefits of culturally contextualized psychological support of traditional healers would result in a broad perception of improved physical functioning and well-being If confirmed, we anticipated that these findings would be among the first to provide data on the potential cultural dynamics that are missing from current policies on ART rollout for Africa.

5 Traditional Healing and HIV Care in rural Zimbabwe Not a substitute for western therapeutics, but an alternative explanatory model for the diagnosis and management of illness Diagnose its socio-etiology, answering the more culturally relevant question: why did this happen to me? Biomedicine can address HIV's physical symptoms, but its social and cultural cause and subsequent meanings can only be revealed through the metaphysical insights of traditional healing

6 Un’anga Health and healing are maintained by a balance of coolness from social harmony that counteracts the heat of social conflict caused by witchcraft, greed and envy Six types of healers (n’anga) –spirit medium (svikiro) –diviner (mushoperi) –herbalist (godobori) –faith healers (muporofita) –midwife (nyamukuta) –injectionist N’angas help individuals examine the interpersonal context of their illness experience e.g. resolve disputes or help individuals cope with grief and loss

7 Quality of Life & HIV/AIDS QoL, hereafter is defined as the degree of well-being felt by an individual or group of people that includes social, economic and political factors. QoL (especially in Public Health) is often measured as physical, psychological and social well-being. Since the advent of the AIDS pandemic, attention to QoL with HIV infection has remained a strong area of study The ability to assess HIV-specific QOL in a culturally sensitive manner is imperative. However, there are few QOL instruments validated for use in sub-Saharan Africa.

8 Quality of Life Measures Quality of Life Measures Medical Outcomes Study HIV Health Survey (MOS-HIV) Wu et al dimensions: –general health perceptions –physical function –role function –social function –cognitive function –Pain –mental health –energy/fatigue –health distress –quality of life –health transition HIV/AIDS-Targeted Quality of Life Instrument (HAT-QoL). Holmes & Shea, dimensions: –overall function –disclosure worries –health worries –financial worries –HIV mastery –life satisfaction –medication worries –provider trust –sexual function

9 Adaptation of the Instruments The International Quality of Life Assessment Project Translation Procedures were used to adapt the QOL instruments. These processes were carried out by six Linguistic graduate students from the University of Zimbabwe, two bilingual health care workers, and the original instrument developers: Drs. William Holmes and Christopher Mast (for Dr. Albert Wu). The reliability and validity of the Shona adapted QOL instruments are reported elsewhere (Taylor, Dolezal, Tross and Holmes, in AIDS Care).

10 Methods

11 Chipinge - A Place of Troubles Border community Commercial farming –Migrant labor –Long distance trucking High illiteracy Extreme rural poverty Gender inequality Military camp Commercial sex workers

12 Participants 400 Shona patients (200 TAC and 200 WC) were consecutively sampled as they sought treatment treatment at 12 sites for one of the following infections associated with HIV: –TB, recurring STIs, unusual skin problems (especially herpes zoster) and chronic diarrhea 24 healers recruited to their self-reported expertise in the treatment of HIV or AIDS Inclusion criteria include: being an adult with one of the aforementioned an OI associated with HIV, and presenting for care and treatment. All respondents read and signed a written consent form.

13 Procedures WC Participants were recruited by their primary care provider (doctor or nurse) and invited to participate in the study. TAC Participants were first invited to participate in the study by the healer. After observing each consultation the PI and research assistant invited only those patients who fit the criteria for the in-depth interview. Interviews were conducted at baseline (after the clinical consultation) and one- month follow-up in a private room at the clinic or healer’s hut

14 Data Collected 254 individuals completed baseline and one-month follow-up Data collected during the interviews included: –A socio-demographic questionnaire (5 min) –MOS-HIV (10 min) –In-depth Interview to elicit an Illness Narrative (20 min)* –WHO clinical guidelines for AIDS (5 min) –HAT-QoL (10 min) *data will not be presented today

15 Analytic Plan For continuous and categorical variables, bivariate two-group comparisons were performed using 2-tailed t-tests and X 2 methods A linear regression model was constructed for each QOL dimension with change-in-dimension-score as the dependent variable Site-of-care (SOC) was entered into all models, along with covariates that exhibited a bivariate association (p≤0.10) with SOC to adjust for potentially confounding Baseline QoL scores were entered into each model to adjust for differences in perceived health status and well-being at study entry Final alpha-level of 0.01 for SOC differences was employed.

16 Results

17 Demographic Profile TAC N=155 WC N=99 Sig. Mean Age (SD) (11.2)32.2 (8.4) NS GenderFemale60%56% NS Marital statusMarried58%52% NS EmploymentNo14%24%0.04 Education Partner Loss Child Loss O-Level >25% 23% 40% 39% 34% NS p-values from chi-square tests, except age, which is from t-test; All percentages computed using denominator made up of all those who provided an answer; rounding may make addition of percentages for some characteristics greater or less than 100%; d O- and A-Levels in Zimbabwe correspond roughly to grades 8-10 and 11-12, respectively, in the United States.

18 Clinical Profile TAC n=155 WC n=99 (p-value) Weight loss79%88% NS Chronic diarrhea67%47%0.001 Prolonged fever74%82% NS Persistent cough54%80%<0.001 Generalized rash51%41% NS Shingles12%19% NS Candida27%38%0.05 Cold sores45%44% NS Lymph nodes68%52%0.01 Meet AIDS definition TB (ever) 74% 9% 79% 66% NS <0.001 STIs (ever)62%55% NS

19 Baseline QoL by Site-of-Care The TAC subgroup had higher (thus, better) baseline scores in 16 out of 19 dimensions On the HAT-QoL, the TAC group significantly exceeded the WC group on 4 out of 8 dimensions –overall function, disclosure worries, life satisfaction, and provider trust On the MOS-HIV, the TAC subgroup significantly exceeded the WC group on 7 out of 11 dimensions –general health perceptions, physical function, role function, social function, pain, mental health, and health distress

20 Baseline HAT-QoL Scores by SOC QoL Dimension, mean (SD)TAC a WC a p-value Overall Function48.49 (25.91)40.24 (24.35).012 Disclosure Worries47.32 (27.98)54.69 (29.16).046 Health Worries46.09 (28.85)41.86 (27.10) NS Financial Worries29.09 (24.77)28.45 (25.06) NS Illness Mastery45.56 (32.16)46.09 (31.93) NS Life Satisfaction44.40 (27.52)35.35 (24.99).009 Medication Worries74.26 (25.97)72.71 (26.38) NS Provider Trust79.25 (23.67)67.09 (28.08) .001

21 Baseline MOS-HIV Scores by SOC QoL Dimension, mean (SD)TACWCp-value General Health Perceptions30.61 (17.44)26.16 (13.49).032 Physical Function62.94 (26.15)54.48 (22.64).007 Role Function50.97 (39.26)40.40 (38.25).036 Social Function59.87 (33.46)48.28 (36.81).012 Cognitive Function49.06 (23.60)47.12 (23.49) NS Pain32.12 (23.86)23.30 (23.47).004 Mental Health54.32 (23.23)47.35 (21.86).018 Energy/Fatigue47.78 (25.11)41.87 (23.89) NS Health Distress (27.55)38.08 (25.37).002 Overall Quality of Life33.71 (25.58)32.58 (24.86) NS Health Transition61.45 (30.58)62.37 (28.21) NS

22 Linear Regression Comparing Change in QoL by Site At an alpha level of  0.05, the TAC subgroup was found to have reported significantly greater adjusted QoL improvements over one month in 14 of 19 dimensions 6 of 8 HAT-QoL dimensions included overall function, health worries, illness mastery, medication worries, financial worries, and provider trust 8 of 11 MOS-HIV include general health perceptions, physical function, role function, pain, energy/fatigue, health distress, mental health, and overall QoL.

23 Adjusted HAT-QoL Change Over 1 Month QoL DimensionTACWCb(se) a p-value HAT-QoL, mean (SD) Overall Function+11.1 (26.5)+1.3 (21.9)11.7 (3.6) Disclosure Worries +1.2 (25.7)-2.2 (24.9) 5.3 (3.6) NS Health Worries+13.3 (32.2)+0.5 (28.1)16.2 (4.2) <0.001 Financial Worries +3.2 (22.5)-4.2 (26.2) 7.0 (3.5) Illness Mastery +5.5 (30.2)-3.2 (26.7)11.4 (4.2) Life Satisfaction+10.8 (32.6)+6.9 (28.3) 6.8 (4.3) NS Medication Worries +7.9 (29.7)-0.9 (27.0)10.9 (3.7) Provider Trust +0.7 (24.1)-1.3 (25.8)11.0 (3.6) a Unstandardized regression results for site-of-care (WC=0, TAC=1) after adjusting for the following: baseline quality of life score, educational attainment, employment status, loss of a spouse, cough, TB, chronic diarrhea, weight loss, swollen lymph nodes, and candidiasis. b Effect size for changes in HAT-QoL and MOS-HIV scores were arbitrarily interpreted in terms of small ( ), moderate ( ), or large (  17.0) changes in quality of life.

24 Adjusted MOS-HIV Change Over 1 Month QOL DimensionTACWCb(se) b p-value MOS-HIV, mean (SD) General Health Perceptions+11.1 (24.0)+0.7 (15.5)10.0 (3.3) Physical Function+10.3 (28.8)+0.5 (22.4)16.0 (3.7) <0.001 Role Function+11.3 (44.7)-0.5 (42.0)18.3 (6.3) Social Function +2.6 (37.4)-2.4 (41.6) 9.7 (5.2) NS Cognitive Function +2.8 (25.3)-0.2 (23.2) 4.4 (3.5) NS Pain+17.9 (28.7)+8.3 (25.8)12.7 (3.6) Mental Health +2.8 (26.0)-1.1 (21.8) 7.9 (3.3) Energy/Fatigue +8.9 (26.1)+0.5 (25.1)10.2 (3.6) Health Distress +7.6 (30.8)+2.5 (26.8)12.8 (4.2) Overall Quality of Life+15.8 (32.5)+2.0 (32.3)10.1 (4.2) Health Transition+14.8 (31.7)+6.3 (32.8) 4.6 (4.0) NS

25 Discussion Patients from the TAC versus the WC sites demonstrated significantly greater (moderate to large in size) improvement across the majority of QOL dimensions assessed over one month Since baseline QOL was higher for the TAC site, this group had less “room” on the scale to improve and, thus, their significantly larger increase is more surprising The differences in improvement were independent of baseline QOL differences between the sites

26 Discussion At baseline there were some clinical parameters on which the sites differed that might have suggested differences in QOL change were in part due to greater illness However, these differences sometimes indicated greater illness in the TAC group (i.e., swollen lymph nodes, chronic diarrhea) and sometimes indicated greater illness in the WC group (i.e., cough, thrush, TB, and past hospitalization) We adjusted for significant symptomatic differences in these analyses –QoL site differences were independent of these variables Similarly, at baseline there were some sociodemographic parameters on which the sites differed. –In adjusted analyses, site QOL change differences were independent of these differences

27 Discussion Our findings may reflect the fact that TAC sites, particularly, provide psychosocial support and a familiar cultural context for health care As the primary system of health care for more than 80% of Africa, TAC provides patients culturally-valued understandings of HIV/AIDS As such, TAC sites may prove to be the most accessible and cost-effective way to bolster access to health care for resource- poor areas and improve the QOL for those living and dying with HIV/AIDS.

28 Role of Traditional Healers Thus far, traditional healers remain underutilized partners in the delivery of HIV care In the era of ART rollout, they could be an invaluable, community-based resource for linkage to HIV testing, education and prevention, and treatment for OIs such as TB As community healthcare providers who are considered local authorities on issues of health and healing, they could be invaluable in implementing directly delivered therapy to improve ART adherence in rural areas where there are not enough WC professionals to monitor patients adherence.

29 Collaboration Many traditional healers in Zimbabwe readily express their limitations in treating HIV/AIDS and are eager to collaborate with WC providers The Zimbabwe National Traditional Healers Association (ZINATHA) has actively worked with the Zimbabwean Medical Research Council to establish protocols for testing traditional remedies thought to be efficacious in treating OIs associated with HIV The time appears right, then, for a productive engagement and study of collaborative care with traditional African healers.

30 Limitations Participants were not randomized to the two subgroups Participants were a consecutively recruited, rural sample, so the representativeness of our findings to urban populations, remains unclear Information about those who we missed in the study is not known, limiting our ability to clarify potential biases The sample was a highly symptomatic one (76% met WHO definition for AIDS and 89% of the WC group had TB) The sample also has an over representation of women Finally, QOL changes were only assessed for one month of follow-up.

31 Conclusion Our finding suggest that confirmatory studies are needed in larger, more diverse African populations If confirmed, these findings will add more weight to recommendations to develop, pilot test, and evaluate culturally-tailored interventions to better engage African PLWHA in HIV care using traditional healers

32 Acknowledgments The National Institute of Mental Health (1R03MH ) The Social Science Research Council Zimbabwe’s National Association of Traditional Healers Zimbabwe’s Medical Research Council The People of Chipinge –Drs. Susan Tross, Curtis Dolezal & William C. Holmes HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies Dr. Taylor is a postdoctoral fellow supported by a training grant from the National Institute of Mental Health (T32 MH19139, Behavioral Sciences Research in HIV Infection; Principal Investigator: Anke A. Ehrhardt, Ph.D.) at the HIV Center for Clinical and Behavioral Studies at NY State Psychiatric Institute and Columbia University (P30-MH43520; Principal Investigator: Anke A. Ehrhardt, Ph.D.)

33 My Team (Back row) Fungai, Simon, Faith, Tonya, Tsaka (the cat) & Carrinah, (Front row) Bernard, Shumba (the dog) and Ines. (Missing) Mzilikazi (our other useless cat)

34 MaShuma Chaivzo!

35 Medical Pluralism is the Norm Preference SiteWC onlyTAC onlyCombined WC35.5%.5%64.0% TAC.0%9.0%91.0% Total17.8%4.8%77.5% Chi- Square a df=2Sig=.000 Chi-Square for Treatment Site vs. Treatment Preference


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