PUBLIC HEALTH

Occurrence of Cryptococcal Meningitis, a Leading Cause of Death of People Living with HIV/AIDS

Intrepid Nepal, under the lead of the DoHS and with support from the Global Fund/Save The Children, STIDH and NCASC, is implementing research to determine the prevalence of cryptococcal disease among Nepal’s HIV positive patients. Since cryptococcal meningitis is a leading cause of death among AIDS patients in resource limited settings, this study is targeted towards the HIV positive population with CD4 counts less than 100, visiting the ART sites of major hospitals: Sukraraj Tropical and Infectious Disease Hospital (Teku), United Mission Hospital (Palpa), Western Regional Hospital (Pokhara) and Bheri Zonal Hospital (Nepalgunj). This study is conducted with the expectation that the prevalence of asymptomatic cryptococcalantigenemia will be >3 percent and national protocols will be developed for early diagnosis and clinical management of cryptococcal meningitis among people living with HIV and AIDS (PLHIV) in Nepal.