In 2017 E.V.A. Association conducted participatory research on the factors influencing adherence to HIV treatment among new mothers in the two years following childbirth. The study included two hundred women from five regions of Russia (Leningrad, Novosibirsk, Orenburg and Samara oblasts and the Khanty-Mansiysk Autonomous Okrug). The results of the research were published in an article called “Social support and postpartum adherence to HIV treatment: a community-based participatory research study in Russia” in the European Journal of Public Health (published by Oxford University Press).
“Our research shows that the support young mothers receive has a positive effect on adherence to antiretroviral therapy after childbirth,” said Dr. Elizabeth King, Associate Professor of Health Behavior and Health Education at the University of Michigan School of Public Health, one of the study authors. “Support from their families and active communication with other young mothers living with HIV both play an especially important role.” “I hope that the results of the research will be useful for peer counselors in their work, insofar as the study further demonstrates that their communication with young mothers helps. It would be good to share it with medical professionals. The research process itself was also an important experience for the entire team, including E.V.A. Association participants from different regions and two sociologists. We all met in St. Petersburg to discuss the survey instrument, recruitment, interviews and the ethics of conducting this study. I think our team did an excellent job executing the research and I hope we can collaborate again in the future. It’s important to note that more than half of the research participants said that they have problems with adherence to antiretroviral therapy. This shows that the issue of postpartum adherence is topical and merits attention.”