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Health Insurance Status of Pregnant Women and the Likelihood of Receipt of Antenatal Screening for HIV in Sub-Saharan Africa
Authors: Muhammad Ragaa Hussein, Deepa Dongarwar, Rafeek A. Yusuf, Zenab Yusuf, Gambo Gumel Aliyu, George Ryan Elmessan, and Hamisu M. Salihu
Source: Current HIV Research, Volume 19 , Issue 3; DOI: 10.2174/1570162X19666210223124835
Topic(s): Antenatal care
Health equity
HIV testing
Country: Africa
  Multiple African Countries
Published: FEB 2021
Abstract: Background: We investigated if initiating preventive care against HIV vertical transmission by antenatal HIV screening is independent of the patients' source of financial reimbursement for the care received in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA). Methods: Using information from the WHO's Global Health Expenditure Database and the Demographic Health Surveys Database for 27 sub-Saharan countries, we used Spearman's correlation and adjusted survey logistic regression to determine the potential relationship between enrollment in health insurance and the likelihood that expectant mothers would be offered antenatal HIV screening. Results: We found that expectant mothers covered by health insurance were more than twice as likely to be offered antenatal screening for HIV compared to the uninsured. The likelihood differed by the type of insurance plan the expectant mother carried. Discussion: Health insurance is more of a financial tool that this study finds to be necessary to boost the uptake of preventive and therapeutic HIV care in SSA. Conclusion: The ensuing disparity in receiving proper care could hinder the goals of 90-90-90 and the forthcoming 95-95-95 plan in SSA.