The Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) currently has one active IeDEA site, the Kalembelembe Pediatric Hospital, with patient data from this hospital and a historical site, Bomoi Health Center, which closed in 2013. There are 7000 patients in the DRC database, including 1,113 active patients.
Current research priorities of the DRC IeDEA team at Kalembelembe include:
- Studying care retention and virologic suppression among women who initiated life-long ART during pregnancy, as well as health system factors associated with these outcomes.
- Collecting blood and placental samples to help assess the associations between HIV, placental function, and low birthweight.
- Exploring factors associated with delays in disclosing HIV status to adolescent patients (aged 12 to 19 years), as well as the impact on care outcomes (retention in care, viral suppression).
- Examining temporal trends in characteristics and outcomes of adolescents enrolled in care and on treatment.
- Developing methods for estimating the cumulative incidence of ART initiation while accounting for “silent transfers” between HIV care and treatment facilities, where patients “lost to clinic” are not necessarily out of care.
- Studying trends in socio-demographic and clinical characteristics of HIV-positive children (< 10 years) at time of enrollment in care and time of ART initiation.