The Open Public Health Journal

ISSN: 1874-9445 ― Volume 14, 2021

Socio-Demographic and Clinical Correlates of Depressive Symptoms Prevalence and Severity Among People Living with Human Immunodeficiency Virus in Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study

Workua M. Metekiya1, *, Dawit Z. Wondafrash2, Mekonnen T. Tesfaw3
1 Department of Psychiatry, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia
2 Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology, School of Pharmacy, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia
3 Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, Wollo University, Wollo, Ethiopia



Mental illness is the leading cause of disability all over the world greatly impacting several vulnerable groups particularly people living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Depression is the most common mental illness especially in people with human immunodeficiency virus and its prevalence is increasing rapidly in the world at an alarming rate among this group population.


The main aim of this study was to investigate the prevalence and severity of depressive symptoms and related factors among patients living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus


An institutional-based cross-sectional study design was conducted among 398 Human Immunodeficiency Virus patients. Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9) and Logistic regression analysis were used to determine predictors of depressive symptoms.


A total of 398 patients with the diagnosis of HIV were enrolled in the present study, whereby the majority were females (275, 69.9%). Prevalence of depressive symptoms among HIV-positive patients was 43.5% (95% CI: 38.2, 48.7). In multivariate analysis, poor sleep quality (AOR: 5.72, 95% CI: 3.52,9.27), Poor social support (AOR: 1.95, 95% CI: 1.15,3.29), lack of education status (AOR: 4.10, 95% CI: 1.92,8.76) elementary school (AOR: 2.46,95% CI: 1.26,4.79) and high school educational status (AOR: 2.11,95% CI: 1.01,4.42) were positively associated with depressive symptoms in people living with the Human Immunodeficiency Virus.


The prevalence of depression symptoms was found to be significantly high in patients living with HIV. Patient’s poor sleep quality, poor social support and lower educational status were found to be dependent predictors of depressive symptoms. Hence, it is important to conduct more interventions to assess the depressive symptoms among HIV patients.

Keywords: Adults, Cross-sectional, Correlates, Depressive symptoms, Ethiopia, Prevalence.

Article Information

Identifiers and Pagination:

Year: 2020
Volume: 13
First Page: 212
Last Page: 219
Publisher Id: TOPHJ-13-212
DOI: 10.2174/1874944502013010212

Article History:

Received Date: 26/01/2020
Revision Received Date: 07/04/2020
Acceptance Date: 11/04/2020
Electronic publication date: 23/05/2020
Collection year: 2020

© 2020 Metekiya et al.

open-access license: This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International Public License (CC-BY 4.0), a copy of which is available at: This license permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Department of Psychiatry, College of Health Sciences, Mekelle University, Mekelle, Ethiopia; Tel: +251922907286; E-mail:

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