Sunday, 19 February 2012 11:42

Assessing the Barriers of Utilization of HIV Services in Post-Conflict Setting in Sudan

Context: Sudan has entered a stage of generalized epidemic with high rate of HIV infection. South Sudan is characterized by a fragile peace and a lack of infrastructure. Other challenges include the return of internally displaced people and refugees. Setting: The study was conducted in Renk South Sudan. The total population is 151,889 people. We stratified the community ac cording to the educational level, gender and age; to reflect the difference in understanding and perception of the disease.

Objectives: The aim of the study was to assess the barriers of utilization of the VCT services in Renk city South Sudan and to as sess the understanding of stakeholder to population context.

Design: The study used qualitative method focus group discussions and in-depth interviews.

Main outcomes: A range of barriers were identified. People were skeptical about the existence of HIV/AIDS. People were found to be very stigmatizing toward PLWAIDS. Those merely entering the VCT centre were labeled as patients and discriminated against; this was not helped by the centre being located inside the hospital and within sight of other people. Others were not knowledgeable about the existence of VCT services and the availability of the treatment.
Stakeholders were found to be unaware of the community’s perceptions of their actual risk for HIV infection. Conclusions: Several factors were found to affect the utilization of VCT services, conflict resulted in poor life style and hygiene and low health awareness. Stakeholders are unaware with a several factors that affect the accessibility and acceptability of the services.

Article Details

  • Author(s): I. Ibrahim, A. Khalil, K. Elmusharaf,
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