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Table 2 HIV infected pregnant and breastfeeding women’s experiences regarding barriers and facilitators of initiation and adherence to lifelong ART

From: Facilitators and barriers to uptake and adherence to lifelong antiretroviral therapy among HIV infected pregnant women in Uganda: a qualitative study

Theme 1: ART Initiation
Sub-themes Good ART adherers Poor ART adherers Delayed ART acceptors
Women’s experience during ART initiation -Started ART the same day they tested HIV +, with little effort on counselling and health education
-Were supposed to start ART the same day they tested HIV+
Facilitators for initiating ART -Desire to have an HIV-free baby -Receipt of HIV negative results/desire to have an HIV free baby
-Desire to remain healthy and live longer to be able to take care of their children -
-Fear to be recognized as a person living with HIV because of the emaciation -
-Health workers motivated - -
Barriers to ART initiation -HIV –related stigma
-Fear of domestic violence and being abandoned by the spouse
-Fear of the big size of the tablets
-Fear of the lengthy of the treatment (lifelong)
- -Fear of dying due to the belief that poor adherence to ART kills
Theme 2: ART Adherence
Level of adherence -Self-drive to adhere to their ART medication
-Experiencing moments of non-adherence due to missing doses or clinic appointments
- Stopped taking ART for some time -
Facilitators to ART adherence -Family support, especially from the spouse - Family support -
-Peer support by attending family support groups (FSGs)
-Receipt of HIV negative results for the baby
Barriers to ART adherence -Failure to disclose to spouse
-Drug related factors.i.e., size and the side effects
-HIV-related stigma
-Forgetting to take their medication  
-Travelling away from home  
-Lack of transport to travel to the health facility to pick drugs
- -Lack of counselling and health education about the treatment