Article abstract


Introduction: provider-initiated HIV testing and counseling (PITC) of patients with presumptive tuberculosis (TB) is not widely implemented and the burden of HIV among them is not well characterized. We assessed the uptake of PITC and prevalence of HIV among patients with presumptive TB in primary care settings in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

 

Methods: PITC was implemented primary care TB clinics in Kinshasa and Kisangani, respectively. In each of the clinics, all patients presenting with cough lasting more than two weeks or any other symptom suggestive of TB were offered HIV testing and counseling and those found to be HIV+ were linked to HIV care and treatment.

 

Results: between November 2011 and June 2013, 43,145 patients with presumptive TB were registered in 65 clinics in Kinshasa of whom 84.0% were counseled; 92.4% of those counseled were tested and 4,320 (12.9%) were found to be HIV+. Similarly, in Kisangani, of the 6,687 patients with presumptive TB were registered in 13 clinics, 80.5% were counseled; 99.3% were tested for HIV and 619 (11.6%) were found to be HIV+.

 

Conclusion: implementation of PITC among patients with presumptive TB in primary care clinics was associated with high uptake of HIV testing and identification of high number of HIV+ patients.