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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Impact of HIV/AIDS on mothers in southern India: a qualitative study.

  • Author(s): Thomas, Beena
  • Nyamathi, Adeline
  • Swaminathan, Soumya
  • et al.

The purpose of this study is to explore the perceptions and needs of mothers living with HIV to gain greater insights into the challenges they face in relation to their health seeking behavior, fears around disclosure, and issues related to stigma and discrimination. This qualitative study utilized focus groups consisting of a sample of 60 HIV-infected mothers recruited from a large maternity hospital and STD clinic in Chennai, India. Discrimination by physicians and other health care workers has been a major impediment expressed by mothers living with HIV in accessing quality health care. Mothers living with HIV are increasingly concerned about how and when to disclose their HIV status to their children and the repercussions which could result from disclosure. The findings of this study call for urgent intervention strategies taking into consideration these various concerns and needs of mothers living with HIV and their children.

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