Impact of care at foster homes on the health-related quality of life of HIV-infected children and adolescents: a cross-sectional study from India
To assess the impact of care at foster homes on the health-related quality of life (HRQOL) of children living with HIV (CLHIV), attending a referral ART Centre, and to compare their HRQOL with children living in their own homes.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in 144 CLHIV between 5 and 18 years of age, attending a referral ART Centre in South India to assess their HRQOL using the standard PedsQL™ 4.0 questionnaire. Data were then analysed to compare the HRQOL of children living in foster homes to those children living in their own homes. The child report and the parent proxy-report on the child’s HRQOL were also compared to see for any differences in their perspectives.
56.25% CLHIV were brought up in different foster homes. In the child’s self-report, the mean HRQOL was higher for children living in foster homes [physical score (76.54 ± 12.40), psychosocial score (71.41 ± 12.40) and total score (73.20 ± 11.13)] when compared to children living in their own homes [physical score (75.09 ± 14.76), psychosocial score (70.60 ± 13.48) and total score (72.17 ± 12.00)]. There was no statistically significant difference in the HRQOL between these two groups (p > 0.05). In the parent proxy-report also, there was no statistically significant difference in the HRQOL in all the three scores. The child self-report depicted a significantly higher HRQOL in all the domains compared to the parent proxy-report (p < 0.05).
HRQOL of children living in foster homes is at par with the quality of life enjoyed by children living in their own homes. Foster care manages to provide a reasonable HRQOL in CLHIV, and has become an inseparable component of quality health care delivery for these children.
KeywordsChildren HIV Health-related quality of life Foster homes HAART
We would like to thank the Karnataka State AIDS Prevention Society and ART Centre, Mangaluru; Dr Unnikrishnan, Associate Dean, Professor and Head, Department of Community Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Mangaluru; and Dr M. Ventakatraya Prabhu Dean and Professor of Medicine, Kasturba Medical College, Mangaluru.
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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