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In 1999, prevention of mother-to-child transmission (pMTCT) using antiretrovirals was introduced in the Dominican Republic (DR). Highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) was introduced for immunosuppressed persons in 2004 and for pMTCT in 2008. To assess progress towards MTCT elimination, data from requisitions for HIV nucleic acid amplification tests for diagnosis of HIV infection in perinatally exposed infants born in the DR from 1999 to 2011 were analyzed. The MTCT rate was 142/1,274 (11.1%) in 1999–2008 and 12/302 (4.0%) in 2009–2011 (), with a rate of 154/1,576 (9.8%) for both periods combined. This decline was associated with significant increases in the proportions of women who received prenatal HAART (from 12.3% to 67.9%) and infants who received exclusive formula feeding (from 76.3% to 86.1%) and declines in proportions of women who received no prenatal antiretrovirals (from 31.9% to 12.2%) or received only single-dose nevirapine (from 39.5% to 19.5%). In 2007, over 95% of DR pregnant women received prenatal care, HIV testing, and professionally attended delivery. However, only 58% of women in underserved sugarcane plantation communities (2007) and 76% in HIV sentinel surveillance hospitals (2003–2005) received their HIV test results. HIV-MTCT elimination is feasible but persistent lack of access to critical pMTCT measures must be addressed.
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Osvaldo Lorenzo, Consuelo M. Beck-Sagué, Claudia Bautista-Soriano, et al., “Progress towards Elimination of HIV Mother-to-Child Transmission in the Dominican Republic from 1999 to 2011,” Infectious Diseases in Obstetrics and Gynecology, vol. 2012, Article ID 543916, 9 pages, 2012. doi:10.1155/2012/543916
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