Looking Beyond HIV Treatment Nonadherence

Jason Tokumoto, MD, explains the need to look beyond nonadherence and understand a patient with HIV as a complex person.

Segment Description: Jason Tokumoto, MD, infectious disease clinician at the University of California San Francisco Medical Center, explains the need to look beyond nonadherence and understand the patient as a complex person.

Interview Transcript (modified slightly for readability):

Tokumoto: If a patient refuses a certain recommendation that the physician or clinician is telling that patient to do, understand what the reasons are, why that person might be refusing.

Because it's not as simple as "Oh, this person is being noncompliant or nonadherent."

There's a lot of issues that you might not be aware of affecting the patient doing what you are recommending to be done.

I need to look at the human part of HIV. In terms of the clinicians, we tend to focus more on the treatment.

You have to understand the social background of that individual and not only the social background, but you need to understand the spiritual aspect of that person, the social aspect of that person, the physical aspect of that person. For me that's so critical, because the spiritual part of that person's life can have a huge impact in terms of how that person is going to manage his HIV. That's the message I really want to send to the clinicians out there.