The Brazilian National AIDS Program is widely recognized as the leading example of an integrated HIV/AIDS prevention, care, and treatment program in a developing country. We critically analyze the Brazilian experience, distinguishing those elements that are unique to Brazil from the programmatic and policy decisions that can aid the development of similar programs in other low-and middleincome and developing countries.Among the critical issues that are discussed are human rights and solidarity, the interface of politics and public health, sexuality and culture, the integration of prevention and treatment, the transition from an epidemic rooted among men who have sex with men to one that increasingly affects women, and special prevention and treatment programs for injection drug users. (Am J Public Health.
This systematic review identified 77 studies to examine patterns and determinants of health care access among Hispanic immigrants (HI) living in the U.S. In spite of major mental and physical care needs, HI and their families are at very high risk of not having access to health care compared with non-immigrant Hispanics and non-Hispanic whites. Noncitizenship status is a major barrier for accessing health care due to program ineligibility and fear of stigma and deportation. Low English proficiency is also an important barrier to health care. Culturally appropriate community outreach programs relying heavily on community health workers, also known as promotoras, have improved health care access and quality. Mexico shares the health care cost for HIs living in bordering states, calling for a binational dialogue. Mixed-methods research is needed to better understand: a) the net influence of acculturation on migrant health; b) the role of informal (e.g., family) vs. formal (e.g. promotoras) social support at facilitating health care access; c) issues related to ‘single’ male migrant farm workers; d) the “Hispanic mortality paradox”; e) traditional healing and medicine among HI. Comprehensive health and immigration reforms are needed to respect the human right that HIs have to gain access to health care.
Research has demonstrated the clinical effectiveness of pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) for HIV prevention, but little is known about how factors at the individual-, interpersonal-, community-, and structural levels impact PrEP use for black men who have sex with men (BMSM). We advance existing work by examining how all levels of the ecological framework must be addressed for PrEP to be successfully implemented as an effective HIV prevention approach. We interviewed 31 BMSM three times each and 17 community stakeholders once each; interviews were taped, transcribed, and analyzed using the constant comparative method. Factors that influence how BMSM experienced PrEP emerged across all levels of the ecological framework: At the individual level, respondents were wary of giving medication to healthy people and of the potential side-effects. At the interpersonal level, BMSM believed that PrEP use would discourage condom use and that PrEP should only be one option for HIV prevention, not the main option. At the community level, men described not trusting the pharmaceutical industry and described PrEP as an option for others, not for themselves. At the structural level, BMSM talked about HIV and sexuality-related stigmas and how they must overcome those before PrEP engagement. BMSM are a key population in the US National HIV/AIDS Strategy, yet few individuals believe that PrEP would be personally helpful. Our research indicates the urgent need to raise awareness and address structural stigma and policies that could be substantial barriers to the scale-up and implementation of PrEP-related services.
BackgroundThe mental health of caregivers has been shown to be important for improving HIV prevention and treatment. Household food insecurity affects hundreds of millions of individuals in Sub-Saharan Africa, a region that experiences a disproportionate burden of the HIV pandemic. Both maternal HIV diagnosis and household food insecurity may be linked with maternal stress. This in turn may lead to unhealthy coping behaviors. We examined the independent associations of HIV, persistent household food insecurity and the synergistic effect of both on maternal stress.MethodsGhanaian women recruited prenatally from hospitals offering voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) were followed for 12 months after childbirth (N = 232). A locally adapted 7-item version of the US Household Food Security Survey Module was applied at four time points postpartum. We dichotomized participant households as being persistently food insecure (i.e., food insecure at each time point) or not (i.e., food secure at any time point). We dichotomized participant women as not perceiving vs. perceiving stress at 12 months postpartum in reference to the median sample score on the 4-item Cohen’s stress scale. Binary multivariate logistic regression models were used to assess the independent and interactive effects of maternal HIV and persistent household food insecurity on maternal stress.ResultsThe proportion of HIV-positive women that lived in severe food insecure households increased over time. By contrast, the HIV-negative group living in severely food insecure households experienced a steady decline across time. HIV-infection (AOR = 2.31, 95% CI 1.29-4.12) and persistent household food insecurity (AOR = 3.55, 95% CI 1.13-11.13) were independently associated with maternal stress in a multivariate model. Being both HIV-positive and persistently food insecure strongly and synergistically increased the risk for maternal perceived stress (AOR = 15.35, 95% CI 1.90-124.14).ConclusionIn agreement with syndemic theory there is a powerful synergism between maternal HIV diagnosis and household food insecurity on maternal stress. Comprehensive multi-dimensional intervention studies are needed to better understand how to reduce stress among HIV-positive women living in persistently food insecure households and how to reduce the likelihood of food insecurity in HIV-affected households in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Objectives Although pornography is widely available and frequently used among many adults in the US, little is known about the relationship between pornography and risk factors for HIV transmission among men who have sex with men. Methods Baseline assessments from a behavioral intervention trial for at-risk men who have sex with men were conducted in Atlanta, GA in 2009. Univariate and multivariate generalized linear models were used to assess the relationships between known risk factors for HIV infection, time spent viewing pornography, and sex behaviors. Results One hundred forty nine men reporting HIV-negative status and two or more unprotected anal sex partners in the past six months were enrolled in an intervention trial and completed survey assessments. Time spent viewing pornography was significantly associated with having more male sexual partners (B=.45, SE=.04, p<.001) and unprotected insertive anal sex acts (B=.28, SE=.04, p<.001). Moreover, increased substance use (drug use, B=.61, SE=.14, p<.001; alcohol use, B=.03, SE=.01, p<.01) and decreased perception of risk for HIV infection (B=-.09, SE=.04, p<.05) were found to be significantly associated with greater time spent viewing pornography. Conclusions This exploratory study is novel in that it sheds light on the associations between viewing pornography and sexual risk taking for HIV infection. Future studies in this area should focus on understanding how the content of pornography, in particular the viewing of unprotected and protected sex acts, may affect sexual risk taking behavior.
Black men who have sex with men (BMSM) experience among the highest rates of HIV infection in the United States. We conducted a community-based ethnography in New York City to identify the structural and environmental factors that influence BMSMs vulnerability to HIV and their engagement with HIV prevention services. Methods included participant observation at community-based organizations (CBOs) in New York City, in-depth interviews with 31 BMSM, and 17 key informant interviews. Our conceptual framework shows how creating and sustaining safe spaces could be a critical environmental approach to reduce vulnerability to HIV among BMSM. Participant observation, in-depth and key informant interviews revealed that fear and mistrust characterized men’s relation to social and public institutions, such as churches, schools, and the police. This fear and mistrust created HIV vulnerability among the BMSM in our sample by challenging engagement with services. Our findings suggest that to be successful, HIV prevention efforts must address these structural and environmental vulnerabilities. Among the CBOs that we studied, “safe spaces” emerged as an important tool for addressing these environmental vulnerabilities. CBOs used safe spaces to provide social support, to address stigma, to prepare men for the workforce, and to foster a sense of community among BMSM. In addition, safe spaces were used for HIV and STI testing and treatment campaigns. Our ethnographic findings suggest that safe spaces represent a promising but so far under-utilized part of HIV prevention infrastructure. Safe spaces seem integral to high impact comprehensive HIV prevention efforts, and may be considered more appropriately as part of HIV capacity-building rather than being nested within program-specific funding structures.
Objectives Latinos are disproportionately vulnerable to severe COVID-19 due to workplace exposure, multigenerational households, and existing health disparities. Rolling out COVID-19 vaccines among vulnerable Latinos is critical to address disparities. This study explores vaccine perceptions of Latino families to inform culturally centered strategies for vaccine dissemination. Method Semistructured telephone interviews with Latino families (22 mothers and 24 youth, 13–18 years old) explored COVID-19 vaccine perceptions including (1) sources of information, (2) trust of vaccine effectiveness and willingness to get vaccinated, and (3) access to the vaccine distribution. We identified thematic patterns using immersion–crystallization. Results We found that (1) 41% expressed optimism and willingness to receive the vaccine coupled with concerns about side effects; (2) 45% expressed hesitancy or would refuse vaccination based on mistrust, myths, fear of being used as “guinea pigs,” and the perceived role of politics in vaccine development; (3) families “digested” information gathered from social media, the news, and radio through intergenerational communication; and (4) participants called for community-led advocacy and “leading by example” to dispel fear and misinformation. Optimistic participants saw the vaccine as a way to protect their families, allowing youth to return to schools and providing safer conditions for frontline essential workers. Conclusions Culturally centered vaccine promotion campaigns may consider the Latino family unit as their target audience by providing information that can be discussed among parents and youth, engaging a range of health providers and advocates that includes traditional practitioners and community health workers, and disseminating information at key venues, such as schools, churches, and supermarkets.
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