Evidence-based practices for retention in care of mother-infant pairs in the context of eliminating mother-to-child transmission of HIV in Eastern and Southern Africa: A summary with guidance for scale up

July 24, 2019
Organization: UNICEF

For countries to achieve the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (EMTCT), mothers and their infants must remain in care through the cessation of breastfeeding and beyond. While many countries in Eastern and Southern Africa have made significant strides in reducing mother-to-child transmission (MTCT) rates at six weeks, the final MTCT rates at the end of the breastfeeding period remain stubbornly high.  This can be attributed in large part to sub-optimal adherence and retention of mother-infant pairs after childbirth.  This study was commissioned by UNICEF Eastern and Southern Africa Regional Office (ESARO) to document and disseminate evidence-based practices and learning to improve retention in care. It is hoped that the documented practices together with the tools and resources identified will support countries to strengthen their prevention of mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) programs and improve outcomes for mothers, children and their families.