Date of Conferral





Public Health


Amy Swango-Wilson


Sickle cell disease (SCD) is a genetic health condition that has continued to increase globally. SCD is prevalent in developing countries like Nigeria with 20 to 30% of the population living with SCD. The aim of this study was to explore the effect of the socioeconomic and cultural factors that affect the quality of life (QOL) of individuals with SCD in Nigeria. The framework for the study is secondary prevention. Secondary prevention allows for opportunities to improve QOL amongst people living with SCD focusing on the health beliefs, and socioeconomic wellbeing. A phenomenological approach was used to collect in-depth data on the effect of socioeconomic and cultural factors from 30 randomly selected individuals living with SCD in Nigeria. Thematic content analysis of participant responses was the qualitative methodology used for this study. Study results indicated that among individuals living with SCD in Nigeria, socioeconomic and cultural factors of the disease contributed to diminishing QOL. Common themes included limited education and awareness, financial support, and cultural beliefs as impactful on an individual's capacity to manage their SCD, leading to diminished QOL. A potential positive social change of this study is to share study results and recommendations with public health officials to promote public health policy and practices that can encourage increased awareness, and treatment of SCD to stimulate a better QOL of individuals living with SCD.

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