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Proportion and predictors of loss to follow-up in a longitudinal cohort study of female entertainment and sex workers in Cambodia


We examined the proportion and correlates of loss to follow-up (LTFU) among female entertainment and sex workers (FESWs) in a longitudinal HIV prevention intervention trial in Cambodia. The Cambodia Integrated HIV and Drug Prevention Intervention trial tested a comprehensive package of interventions aimed at reducing amphetamine-type stimulant use and HIV risk among FESWs in ten provinces. The present study estimated the proportion of women LTFU and assessed factors associated with LTFU. Logistic regression analyses were used. Of a total 596 women enrolled, the cumulative proportion of LTFU was 29.5% (n = 176) between zero- and 12-month follow-up. In multivariate analyses, women with no living children (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 1.6; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.1, 2.3) and those who experienced recent food insecurity (AOR 1.7; 95%CI: 1.1, 2.7) were more likely to be LTFU. Women who were members of the SMARTgirl HIV prevention programme for ≥ 6 months compared to non-members were less likely to be LTFU (AOR 0.3; 95%CI: 0.2, 0.6). LTFU was moderately high in this study and similar to other studies, indicating a need for strategies to retain this population in HIV prevention programmes and research. Interventions aimed at stabilizing women's lives, including reducing food insecurity and creating communities of engagement for FESWs, should be considered.

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