Background: Retention in HIV care can be impacted by structural factors such as crime, poverty, and clinic accessibility. We aimed to determine if crime rate, travel time, or travel distance to clinic were associated with retention in care or viral suppression (VS) among people living with HIV (PLWH) at the largest provider of HIV care on the South Side of Chicago.
Methods: Using publicly available data in the Chicago Open Data Portal, we geocoded patient home addresses and clinic location. We measured distance from patient home to clinic, and travel time from patient home to clinic using car and Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) public transportation. We further measured crime rate within a two block radius of the public transportation route to clinic. Retention was defined as >2 visits, 90 days apart within 12 months, and patients were classified into 3 groups: continuously retained (CR), intermittently retained (IR), or lost to follow-up (LTFU), i.e. no visit in the last 12-months. Kruskal-Wallis rank sum with Dunns pairwise test was used to determine if travel time, travel distance, and crime rate were associated with retention or viral suppression.
Results: 780 patients were included in the study. Of these 273 (35%) were CR, 392 (50%) were IR, and 115 (15%) were LTFU. Figure 1 shows maps with geocoded data. Median distance from clinic was 3.6 [2.1-5.6] miles among those CR, 3.9 [2.5-6.0] miles among the IR, and 3.9 [2.6-6.2] miles among those LTFU. Median travel time by CTA was 37.2 [31.8-53.0] mins for CR, 42.9 [33-53] mins for IR, and 42.9 [33-59.1] mins for LTFU; by car was 15.9 [9.6-33] mins for CR, 17.1 [11.8-24.6] mins for IR, and 17.5 [12.2-24.1] mins for LTFU. Crime rate was similar across all retention groups. Though no associations were statistically significant at p<0.05, there was a trend toward shorter distance (p=0.07) and shorter car travel time (p=0.06) among CR vs. IR. There was also a trend toward lower neighborhood crime rates among those VS vs. those not VS (p=0.07).
Conclusion: Retention in care was not impacted by residing in high crime neighborhoods in Chicago. PLWHA who lived farther from HIV clinic and had longer travel time showed a trend toward being more likely to be IR in care vs. CR, but there was no such association for VS. Travel time may impact patient likelihood to attend HIV care appointments, but not necessarily adherence to ART.
J. P. Ridgway,
J. Schmitt, None
T. Schuble, None
J. Schneider, None