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Prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse among people living with HIV: a scoping review protocol

  • Chibi, Buyisile1, 2, 3
  • Torres, Neusa Fernanda1, 4
  • Mashamba-Thompson, Tivani P.1, 5
  • 1 University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, 4001, South Africa , Durban (South Africa)
  • 2 Human Sciences Research Council, Durban, South Africa , Durban (South Africa)
  • 3 Doris Duke Medical Research Institute, 2nd Floor, 719 Umbilo Road, Durban, 4041, South Africa , Durban (South Africa)
  • 4 ISCISA—Higher Institute for Health Sciences, Maputo, Mozambique , Maputo (Mozambique)
  • 5 University of Limpopo, Mankweng, South Africa , Mankweng (South Africa)
Published Article
Systematic Reviews
BioMed Central
Publication Date
Feb 12, 2020
DOI: 10.1186/s13643-020-1273-4
Springer Nature


BackgroundPrescription drugs are controlled medicines due to their potential risks of being diverted, misused, and abused. Since the introduction of antiretroviral (ARVs) drugs, HIV is currently regarded as a chronic condition. However, prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse might serve as one of the critical barriers for achieving optimal medication adherence among people living with HIV, thereby negatively impacting the HIV care mandate. The primary aim of this scoping review is to gather evidence on the prevalence, practices, risk factors, and motives associated with prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse, as well as the evidence on the association between prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse with antiretroviral treatment (ART) adherence.MethodsThis review will be guided by Arksey and O’Malley’s framework as well as recommendations by Levac et al. (Implement Sci 5:69, 2010). We will search the following databases for relevant literature meeting our eligibility criteria: PubMed, Google Scholar, EBSCOhost (Academic Search Complete, MEDLINE, and Newspaper Source), World Health Organization, Science Direct, and Open Access Theses and Dissertations. Studies published within the period of January 1996 to June 2019 are eligible. The included studies should report evidence on the prevalence, practices, risk factors, motives, or association between ART adherence and prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse. Thematic analysis will be applied to summarize the review findings.DiscussionWe anticipate finding a considerable number of research studies on prescription drug diversion, misuse, and abuse among people living with HIV. Our synthesis of this evidence base is intended to serve as guidance for future research studies. The study findings will be disseminated through the traditional academic platforms, such as peer-reviewed publications and presentations at relevant local and international conferences, symposiums, and seminars.Systematic review registrationPROSPERO CRD42017074076

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