The Impact of Mentor Mother Programs on PMTCT Service Uptake and Retention-in-Care at Primary Health Care Facilities in Nigeria: A Prospective Cohort Study (MoMent Nigeria)
JAIDS-JOURNAL OF ACQUIRED IMMUNE DEFICIENCY SYNDROMES
Bayero University, Obafemi Awolowo University, University of Maryland Baltimore, University System of Maryland, Clinton Hlth Access Initiat, Equitable Hlth Access Initiat, Fed Minist Hlth, Inst Human Virol Nigeria
Background:Nigeria is a key target country in the global effort toward elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV. Low coverage of prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) interventions, adherence, and retention-in-care rates in HIV-positive pregnant women are contributing factors to high mother-to-child transmission of HIV (MTCT) rates. In Nigeria, rural areas, served largely by primary health care facilities, have particularly poor indicators of PMTCT coverage. Mentor Mothers are HIV-positive women who serve as peer counselors for PMTCT clients, provide guidance, and support in keeping appointments and promoting antiretroviral adherence and retention-in-care. The Mother Mentor (MoMent) study aims to investigate the impact of structured Mentor Mother programs on PMTCT outcomes in rural Nigeria.Design and Methods:A prospective cohort study will compare rates of retention-in-care among PMTCT clients who are supported by formally-trained supervised Mentor Mothers versus clients who receive standard-of-care, informal peer support. Study sites are 20 primary health care centers (10 intervention, 10 control) in rural North-Central Nigeria. The study population is HIV-positive mothers and exposed infant pairs (MIPs) (N = 480; 240 MIPs per study arm). Primary outcome measures are the proportion of exposed infants receiving early HIV testing by age 2 months, and the proportion of MIPs retained in care at 6 months postpartum. Secondary outcome measures examine antiretroviral adherence, 12-month postpartum MIP retention, and MTCT rates. This article presents details of the study design, the structured Mentor Mother programs, and how their impact on PMTCT outcomes will be assessed.