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Background Limited data are available on clinical outcomes of people living with HIV (PLWH) in China, especially after the implementation of the 2016 national treatment guideline. The objective of the current study is to examine the treatment patterns, clinical outcomes and their associated factors among PLWH in Guangxi, China before and after this new guideline.

Methods Data from three community-based projects conducted at different time points over a period of six years (2012–2017) in Guangxi were analyzed in our study. The interviewer-administered questionnaire was used for data collection. Measures of clinical outcomes were retrieved from the patients’ medical records. Descriptive analysis was employed to display treatment patterns and the time trends of clinical outcomes. Chi-square test or ANOVA was used to compare the differences in background characteristics and treatment history between different levels of clinical outcomes.

Results Among the pooled sample of 4224 participants, 77.3% were receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART), the median CD4 count was 328 cells/mm3, and 82.5% were virally suppressed. An increasing trend in both ART coverage (from 72.1% to 91.2%) and CD4 count (from 318 cells/mm3 to 357 cells/mm3) was observed over time in the three samples, while rates of viral suppression did not show a similar trend. A number of socio-demographic characteristics (e.g., female gender, younger age, Han ethnicity, and employment) and treatment-related variables (e.g., longer durations of HIV diagnosis and ART uptake, lower prevalence of comorbidity, fewer treatment interruptions, and more knowledge on ART) were associated with improved clinical outcomes.

Conclusions We observed a high rate of viral suppression and increasing trends in ART coverage and CD4 count over six years in Guangxi, China. However, suboptimal clinical outcomes continue to be a problem, particularly among some subgroups of PLWH. Future clinical management strategies should be tailored for PLWH with different sociodemographic characteristics and treatment trajectories.

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© 2019 Yang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

APA Citation

Yang, X., Li, X., Qiao, S., Zhang, Q., Shen, Z., & Zhou, Y. (2019). Immunological and virologic outcomes of people living with HIV in Guangxi, China: 2012-2017. PLOS ONE, 14(3).