Does treatment collection and observation each day keep the patient away? An analysis of the determinants of adherence among patients with Tuberculosis in South Africa

Stephen Birch, V. Govender, J. Fried, J. Eyles, V. Daries, M. Moshabela, S. Cleary

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


Directly observed treatment short course (DOTS) has been the recommended strategy for Tuberculosis (TB) control since 1995. Developed as an alternative to inpatient treatment, it involves observation of patients' medication intake to promote adherence. However, the burden of daily clinic visits may affect access to care. Using a mixed methods approach, we consider whether (1) non-adherence differs systematically between patients required to make daily clinic visits and patients cared for under less frequent clinic visits and (2) the association between frequency of required clinic visits and adherence depends on affordability and acceptability of care. Data were collected in facility exit interviews with 1200 TB patients in two rural and two urban sub-districts in South Africa. Additionally, 17 in-depth interviews were completed with TB patients. After controlling for socioeconomic and demographic factors, patient type (new or retreatment) and treatment duration, regression analyses showed that daily attending patients were over twice as likely to report a missed clinic visit (P 
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)454-461
JournalHealth Policy and Planning
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2016


Bibliographical note

This article is not available on the repository


  • Access
  • DOTS
  • equity
  • socio-economic status
  • South Africa
  • tuberculosis

Cite this