The results of the study show that those who completed the CBT-AD sessions were more than 2.5 times more likely to achieve undetectable viral loads than those who received usual care.
Nurses trained to provide appropriate cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in public HIV clinics can help people with depression and uncontrolled HIV stick to their medication regimen, study results show.
âWe know that treating HIV-positive people who are clinically depressed with antidepressants alone does not affect their viral load. Their depression may improve, but not their grip, âSteven Safren, professor of psychology and director of the Center for HIV / AIDS and Mental Health Research at the University of Miami, said in a statement.
“We have shown that it is possible to train nurses to provide cognitive behavioral therapy for adherence and depression (CBT-AD), an intervention that successfully treats both clinical depression and uncontrolled HIV. “, did he declare.
Investigators found that people who completed CBT-AD sessions were more than 2.5 times more likely to achieve undetectable viral loads than those who received usual care.
The study included 161 people with AIDS / HIV and clinical depression from 4 public health clinics in Khayelitsha Township, South Africa.
They found that South Africa has only 0.28 psychiatrists and 0.32 psychologists per 100,000 people, although doctors can prescribe antidepressants.
Everyone in the study received usual care for clinical depression and AIDS / HIV. Not every individual has achieved viral suppression after receiving the first month of their antiretroviral therapy.
Half of the people were randomly assigned to 8 CBT-AD sessions where trained nurses used depression treatment strategies with counseling that included depression, life skills, mood monitoring, problem solving and relaxation.
To track their membership, individuals were given an electronic pill organizer which, when opened, transmitted a real-time signal to a web server.
The next step will be for investigators to assess how to appropriately implement the CBT-AD approach in South Africa, or even South Florida, said Safren.
Researchers are developing a model to treat HIV / AIDS and depression. EurekAlert. Press release. December 1, 2021. Accessed December 2, 2021. https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/936605