Perceptions of the Presidential Alternative Treatment Program and Factors Associated with Enrollment
Alumni: Michelle Adeniyi
Faculty: Sarah Bosha
In 2007, former Gambian president, Yahya Jammeh, announced his herbal ‘cure’ for human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). He publicized the effectiveness of his “Presidential Alternative Treatment Program” (PATP) and required patients to cease use of their antiretroviral therapy (ART) while enrolled. The introduction of this program targeted PLHIV by creating a new option for treatment of HIV. This cross sectional descriptive study identified the perceptions of PATP among PLHIV and how treatment-seeking behavior and access to care in The Gambia may have been altered. Data was collected from 182 participants from Banjul City Council (BCC), Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC), West Coast Region (WCR), Lower River Region (LRR), and North Bank Region (NBR) in The Gambia. Perceptions of PATP varied among respondents. Education level and ethnicity were indicators of belief in PATP’s ability to have a cure and treatment-seeking behavior was affected among both those who did and did not participate in the program.