In 2013 the ILO commissioned a team of independent researchers, managed by the ILO HIV and AIDS and the World of Work Branch (ILOAIDS) to assess the evidence on the relationship between the employment status of people living with HIV and their adherence to treatment.
The study review was undertaken in two parts. The first component was based on a systematic review of existing studies that had looked at the association between the employment status of people living with HIV (PLHIV) and adherence to HIV medications. The following electronic databases were searched: MEDLINE, EMBASE, SCI Web of Science, NLM Gateway and Google scholar databases. In addition, manual searches of retrieved article bibliographies were conducted. Two independent reviewers extracted data on adherence and study characteristics and synthesized the results across studies.
The independent researchers attempted to address the following broad questions: Assess the evidence on the relationship between employment status of a person living with HIV and their adherence to treatment; assess the gender dimensions of the relationship between employment status and treatment adherence (the differential impact of employment on treatment adherence for women and men); generate understanding on how employment contributes (or otherwise) to treatment adherence (e.g., effect of employment on mental health, physical health, financial independence, etc.); and assess whether different types of employment or jobs have different impacts on treatment adherence.