Online Program

Mother-to-child HIV transmission: Snapshot of an epidemic in the republic of Panama

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Lorna Jenkins, MD, MSPH, CPH, School of Public Health. Department of Epidemiology, University of South Florida, Panama, Panama
Aurelio Nunez, MD, MPH, FETP, Country leader for policy making related to HIV/AIDS at the ministry of Health, National STI/HIV/AIDS program at the Republic of Panama, Panama, Panama
Background: Worldwide HIV is going through a feminization and rejuvenation as more women are living with HIV/AIDS, increasing the risk of vertical transmission. Despite the efforts in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) by 2010, Panama was the third most affected country in the region with HIV/AIDS, with females aged 15-24 twice as affected as men. Methods: This descriptive epidemiological study of HIV vertical transmission in Panama reviewed clinical charts to identify health care personnel's practices during pregnancies in 2008. This study also examines the impact of interventions comparing the HIV outcome of the children at the end of the 18-month follow-up period (March 2011). Results: This study found 174 clinical charts of prenatally exposed children in 2008. During pregnancy, 58.05% of the mothers received HAART, and 68.39% received intravenous zidovudine during labor. The 81.03% of the children received oral zidovudine six weeks after birth, and 54.02% were fed with infant-adapted formula. During the follow-up period 12.64% of children studied were diagnosed as HIV positive and 36.36% of those children had an older seropositive sibling. Discussion: The Republic of Panama has made efforts to prevent vertical HIV transmission. The current study shows early interventions such as receiving HAART during pregnancy, intravenous zidovudine during labor, caesarean section birth, receiving oral zidovudine six weeks after birth, and feeding with infant-adapted formula that show statistical significance when compared to final diagnosis of the prenatally exposed children to HIV. (235)

Learning Areas:

Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related organizational policy, standards, or other guidelines
Public health or related public policy
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Evaluate the impact of interventions to prevent mother-to-child HIV transmission in a limited resource country such as Panama.

Keyword(s): HIV/AIDS, Prenatal Interventions

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I'm a medical doctor involved in sexual health and reproductive rights, specially in HIV/AIDS for the last seven years. I Worked as a Consultant for the Panamanian AIDS program to monitor and evaluate the impact of interventions. I studied international research policies and planning in order to assist my country developing comprehensive health programs for secondary prevention of HIV.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.