ItemEquity in maternal health outcomes in a middleincome urban setting a cohort studyA De Groot; L Van de Munt; D Boateng; A Savitri; Kerstin Klipstein-Grobusch; E et al ItemHIV-related knowledge, perceptions, attitudes, and utilisation of HIV counselling and testing: a venue-based intercept commuter population survey in the inner city of Johannesburg, South Africa(2015) Chimoyi, L; Tshuma, N; Muloongo, K; et alBackground: HIV counselling and testing (HCT) and knowledge about HIV have been key strategies utilised in the prevention and control of HIV/AIDS worldwide. HIV knowledge and uptake of HCT services in sub-Saharan Africa are still low. This study was conducted to determine factors associated with HCT and HIV/AIDS knowledge levels among a commuter population in Johannesburg, South Africa. Objective: To identify the factors associated with HCT uptake among the commuter population. Design: A simple random sampling method was used to select participants in a venue-based intercept survey at a taxi rank in the Johannesburg Central Business District. Data were collected using an electronic questionnaire. Logistic regression analysis assessed factors associated with HIV testing stratified by gender. Results: 1,146 respondents were interviewed, the ma[j]ority (n = 579, 50.5%) were females and (n = 780, 68.1%) were over 25 years of age. Overall HCT knowledge was high (n = 951, 83%) with more females utilising HCT facilities. There was a significant difference in HIV testing for respondents living closer to and further away from health facilities. Slightly more than half of the respondents indicated stigma as one of the barriers for testing (n = 594, 52%, p-value = 0.001). For males, living with a partner (aOR: 1.68, 95% CI: 1.02-2.78, p-value: 0.041) and possessing a post-primary education were positively associated with testing (aOR: 2.00, 95% CI: 1.15-3.47, p-value: 0.014), whereas stigma and discrimination reduced the likelihood of testing (aOR: 0.40, 95% CI: 0.31-0.62, p-value: <0.001). For females, having one sexual partner (aOR: 2.65, 95% CI: 1.19-5.90, p-value: 0.017) and a low perceived benefit for HIV testing (aOR: 0.54, 95% CI: 0.30-0.96, p-value: 0.035) were associated with HIV testing. Conclusion: The overall HIV/AIDS knowledge was generally high. Gender-specific health education and HIV intervention programmes are needed for improved access to HCT services. One favourable intervention would be the use of home-based HCT programmes. ItemHealth-seeking behaviours by gender among adolescents in Soweto, South Africa(2015) Otwombe, K.; Dietrich, J.; Laher, F.; et alBACKGROUND: Adolescents are an important age-group for preventing disease and supporting health yet little is known about their health-seeking behaviours. OBJECTIVE: We describe socio-demographic characteristics and health-seeking behaviours of adolescents in Soweto, South Africa, in order to broaden our understanding of their health needs. DESIGN: The Botsha Bophelo Adolescent Health Study was an interviewer-administered cross-sectional survey of 830 adolescents (14-19 years) conducted in Soweto from 2010 to 2012. Health-seeking behaviours were defined as accessing medical services and/or being hospitalised in the 6 months prior to the survey. Chi-square analysis tested for associations between gender, other socio-demographic and behavioural characteristics, and health-seeking behaviours. RESULTS: Of 830 adolescents, 57% were female, 50% were aged 17-19 years, 85% were enrolled in school, and 78% reported experiencing medium or high food insecurity. Males were more likely than females to report sexual debut (64% vs. 49%; p<0.0001) and illicit drug use (11% vs. 3%; p<0.0001). Approximately 27% (n=224) and 8% (n=65) reported seeking healthcare or being hospitalised respectively in the previous 6 months, with no significant differences by gender. Services were most commonly sought at medical clinics (75%), predominantly because of flu-like symptoms (32%), followed by concerns about HIV (10%). Compared to females, males were more likely to seek healthcare for condom breakage (8% vs. 2%; p=0.02). Relative to males, a significantly higher proportion of females desired general healthcare services (85% vs. 78%; p=0.0091), counselling (82% vs. 70%; p<0.0001), and reproductive health services (64% vs. 56%; p=0.02). CONCLUSIONS: A quarter of male and female adolescents accessed health services in the 6 months prior to the interview. Adolescents reported a gap between the availability and the need for general, reproductive, and counselling services. Integrated adolescent-friendly, school-based health services are recommended to bridge this gap. ItemFactors associated with mortality in HIV-infected people in rural and urban South Africa(2014) Otwombe, K N; Petzold, M; Modisenyane, T; et alBackground: Factors associated with mortality in HIV-infected people in sub-Saharan Africa are widely reported. However rural urban disparities and their association with all-cause mortality remain unclear. Furthermore, commonly used classical Cox regression ignores unmeasured variables and frailty. Objective: To incorporate frailty in assessing factors associated with mortality in HIV-infected people in rural and urban South Africa. Design: Using data from a prospective cohort following 6,690 HIV-infected participants from Soweto (urban) and Mpumalanga (rural) enrolled from 2003 to 2010; covariates of mortality were assessed by the integrated nested Laplace approximation method. Results: We enrolled 2,221 (33%) rural and 4,469 (67%) urban participants of whom 1,555 (70%) and 3,480 (78%) were females respectively. Median age (IQR) was 36.4 (31.0 44.1) in rural and 32.7 (28.2 38.1) in the urban participants. The mortality rate per 100 person-years was 11 (9.7 12.5) and 4 (3.6 4.5) in the rural and urban participants, respectively. Compared to those not on HAART, rural participants had a reduced risk of mortality if on HAART for 6 12 (HR: 0.20, 95% CI: 0.10 0.39) and 12 months (HR: 0.10, 95% CI: 0.05 0.18). Relative to those not on HAART, urban participants had a lower risk if on HAART 12 months (HR: 0.35, 95% CI: 0.27 0.46). The frailty variance was significant and 1 in rural participants indicating more heterogeneity. Similarly it was significant but B1 in the urban participants indicating less heterogeneity. Conclusion: The frailty model findings suggest an elevated risk of mortality in rural participants relative to the urban participants potentially due to unmeasured variables that could be biological, socio economic, or healthcare related. Use of robust methods that optimise data and account for unmeasured variables could be helpful in assessing the effect of unknown risk factors thus improving patient management and care in South Africa and elsewhere. ItemSouth African Menopause Society revised consensus position statement on menopausal hormone therapy, 2014(2014-08) Guidozzi, F; Alperstein, A; Bagratee, J S; et al.The South African Menopause Society (SAMS) consensus position statement on menopausal hormone therapy (HT) 2014 is a revision of the SAMS Council consensus statement on menopausal HT published in the SAMJ in May 2007. Information presented in the previous statement has been re-evaluated and new evidence has been incorporated. While the recommendations pertaining to HT remain similar to those in the previous statement, the 2014 revision includes a wider range of clinical benefits for HT, the inclusion of non-hormonal alternatives such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors and serotonin noradrenaline reuptake inhibitors for the management of vasomotor symptoms, and an appraisal of bioidentical hormones and complementary medicines used for treatment of menopausal symptoms. New preparations that are likely to be more commonly used in the future are also mentioned. The revised statement emphasises that commencing HT during the ‘therapeutic window of opportunity’ maximises the benefit-to-risk profile of therapy in symptomatic menopausal women. ItemCharting the path along the continuum of PMCT or HIV-1 to elimination and finally to eradication(2014-01) EditorialIn this editorial we traverse the continuum of transmission of HIV-1 from mothers to children to highlight the biomedical history of this problem. Treatment has progressed from prevention with antiretrovirals (ARVs) through to a broader set of interventions, including various breastfeeding options and other health system improvements, that have increased the possibility of eliminating mother-to-child-transmission (MTCT) of HIV.