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Many Indian HIV patients drop out of healthcare before they qualify for antiretrovirals, study finds

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 24 October 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f6390

This article has a correction. Please see:

  1. Cheryl Travasso
  1. 1Mumbai

Researchers in India have suggested that people with HIV be entitled to free antiretroviral treatment earlier in the development of their illness, to avoid their dropping out of regular assessment and missing out on treatment when they need it.

About half of patients with a diagnosis of HIV who are initially found to have a CD4 count considered too high for free treatment are lost to follow -up over the next four and a half years. Consequently they never receive antiretrovirals when their CD4 count falls below 200 cells ×109/L, when they would qualify for it.

India has 2.4 million people infected with HIV, the third highest burden in the world. However, little is known about …

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