Strategies to improve access to health care for people living with human immunodeficiency virus (PLHIV) have demonstrated limited success. Whereas previous approaches have been informed by the views of health providers and decision-makers, it is believed that incorporating patient perspectives into the design and evaluations of health care programs will lead to improved access to health care services.
We aim to map the literature on the perspectives of PLHIV concerning access to health care services, to identify gaps in evidence, and to produce an evidence-informed research action plan to guide the Living with HIV program of research.
This scoping review includes peer-reviewed and grey literature from 1946 to May 2014 using double data extraction. Variations of the search terms “HIV”, “patient satisfaction”, and “health services accessibility” are used to identify relevant literature. The search strategy is being developed in consultation with content experts, review methodologists, and a librarian, and validated using gold standard studies identified by those stakeholders. The inclusion criteria are (1) the study includes the perspectives of PLHIV, (2) study design includes qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods, and (3) outcome measures are limited to patient satisfaction, their implied needs, beliefs, and desires in relation to access to health care. The papers are extracted by two independent reviewers, including quality assessment. Data is then collated, summarized, and thematically analyzed.
A total of 12,857 references were retrieved, of which 326 documents were identified as eligible in pre-screening, and 64 articles met the inclusion criteria (56% qualitative studies, 38% quantitative studies and 6% mixed-method studies). Only four studies were conducted in Canada. Data synthesis is in progress and full results are expected in June, 2016.
This scoping review will record and characterize the extensive body of literature on perspectives of PLHIV regarding access to health care. A literature repository will be developed to assist stakeholders, decision-makers, and PLHIV in developing and implementing patient-oriented health care programs.