Building the Capacity of Lay Health Counsellors to Improve ART Uptake among High CD4 Patients under the “Treat All’ Policy in South Africa

In September 2016, South Africa began implementing test-and-treat, in which everyone who tests HIV positive is offered antiretroviral therapy (ART), in hopes of attaining the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets. However the success of the test-and-treat approach depends on early HIV testing and lifelong HIV treatment. In South Africa, lay HIV counselors are the first to introduce ART to newly diagnosed patients. However, most are under-trained with little professional supervision and emotional support and a well-designed training and support program with a focus on Motivational Interviewing (MI) counseling skills development and maintenance is needed to increase lay counsellors’ capacity to improve ART acceptance and patient retention. To this end, we applied the Intervention Mapping protocol to create a MI training and support program, tailored to improve lay HIV counsellors’ capacity to deliver MI based ART demand creation focused counseling at primary care settings in the South African context. The aim of this study are therefore: 1. To Pre-test the MI training and support program for lay health counselors with district and facility managers in the Gauteng province of South Africa. 2. To conduct a two-phase cluster-randomized controlled trial to assess: a. The impact of the MI training and support program on the MI capacity of lay HIV counselors. b. The impact of MI trained lay HIV counselors on early ART acceptance and 12 months retention post ART initiation by HIV positive patient diagnosed under the test and treat guidelines in Gauteng province, South Africaright to

Principal Investigator/ Program Director Dr Dorina Onoya
Start dateJanuary 2017
End dateSeptember 2018

Funded by


HE2RO staff involved

Dr Dorina Onoya   Dr Idah Mokhele   Tembeka Sineke   Jan Maboela   Zoleka Luvuno  

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