Date of Conferral

2016

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Health Services

Advisor

Dr.John Oswald

Abstract

HIV/AIDS-related stigma and discrimination (S&D), lack of social support, poverty, and gender inequalities have been identified as factors in the increased prevalence rate of HIV transmission in Enugu, Nigeria, especially among women ages 15 to 49 years. Despite the funding of reduction programs, HIV/AIDS-related S&D remain a major driving force in the increased rate of new HIV cases in Enugu. This study addressed a perceived need for behavioral change intervention approaches that span all societal factors to reduce the HIV infection rate in Enugu Nigeria. The study was guided by Goffman's (1963) social S&D theory. The sample was composed of 132 women living with HIV/AIDS WLWHA ages 21 to 54 years, purposefully sampled from the 4 HIV and AIDS comprehensive initiatives care centers in Enugu, Nigeria. Fifteen WLWHA were interviewed and 114 participated in an online survey. The descriptive statistics and a multiple linear regression analysis and comparison revealed a convergent significant relationship between the S&D determinants (social, political, psychological, environmental, and cultural) and HIV/AIDS-related S&D towards WLWHA in Enugu F (4,109) = 45.09, p <.001). It also revealed that the cultural determinant of S&D was a significant predictor of HIV/AIDS-related S&D towards WLWHA in Enugu (β = 0.81, p < 0.001). The implications for positive social change include providing public health professionals evidence-based data to inform policy change, plan and to implement programs that will change societal attitudes and mobilize broad-based community actions to eradicate HIV/AIDSâ??related S&D toward WLWHA in Enugu, Nigeria, and in Sub-Saharan African Countries.

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