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A Qualitative Study of Underutilization of the AIDS Drug Assistance Program

Olson KM,Godwin NC,Wilkins SA,Mugavero MJ,Moneyham LD,Slater LZ,Raper JL.

Abstract

In our previous work, we demonstrated underutilization of the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) at an HIV clinic in Alabama. In order to understand barriers and facilitators to utilization of ADAP, we conducted focus groups of ADAP enrollees. Focus groups were stratified by sex, race, and historical medication possession ratio as a measure of program utilization. We grouped factors according to the social-ecological model. We found that multiple levels of influence, including patient and clinic-related factors, influenced utilization of antiretroviral medications. Patients introduced issues that illustrated high-priority needs for ADAP policy and implementation, suggesting that in order to improve ADAP utilization, the following issues must be addressed: patient transportation, ADAP medication refill schedules and procedures, mailing of medications, and the ADAP recertification process. These findings can inform a strategy of approaches to improve ADAP utilization, which may have widespread implications for ADAP programs across the United States.