Evidence behind the WHO guidelines: Hospital care for children: What is the role of HIV antigen testing in infants < 12-months old?


The World Health Organization has produced guidelines for the management of common illnesses in hospitals with limited resources. This series reviews the scientific evidence behind WHO’s recommendations. The WHO guidelines, and more reviews are available at http://www.ichrc.org This review addresses the question: What is the role of HIV antigen testing in infants <12-months old? The WHO Pocketbook of Hospital Care for Children recommends HIV antibody tests (ELISA or rapid) from the age of 18 months. For children <18 months, they can be used to diagnose the exposed infant, but not necessarily the infected infant. The guidelines also state that all positive HIV antibody tests should be confirmed by virological tests as soon as possible; otherwise repeat antibody testing can be performed after 18 months of age (Pocketbook, p. 204).


Finnegan J, Noble KA, Lodha R.




  • Population(s)
    • Children or Youth (less than 18 years old)
  • Testing
    • Testing


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