Exploring facilitators and barriers to condition self-management in young people with perinatal HIV

Chinma Onyewuenyi1, Amanda Ely2, Joelle Mak1
1Department of Global Health and Development, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, UK

Children with perinatal HIV are now more likely to survive into adulthood. The ability of young people to manage their HIV condition can determine the success of their transition between paediatric and adult care. This article explores the skills and knowledge necessary for young people to self-manage their perinatal HIV and the associated facilitators and barriers to the developmental process. Eight young people with perinatal HIV were interviewed through the Children’s HIV Association. The skills of adhering to a medical regimen and communication about their perinatal HIV were facilitated by decreased involvement of caregivers in condition management alongside an increased engagement of the young people with healthcare providers, and the presence of a strong support network. Barriers to skill development included negative experiences, information gaps and motivation loss. Understanding what aids or impedes the self-management developmental process highlights opportunities for healthcare providers to ensure this ability is developing appropriately.