Assessment of Socio-Cultural Risks in Relation to HIV Transmission in Pastoralist Community of Surma Woreda, SNNPR, Ethiopia

Degu, Mesfin (2006) Assessment of Socio-Cultural Risks in Relation to HIV Transmission in Pastoralist Community of Surma Woreda, SNNPR, Ethiopia. Masters thesis, Addis Ababa University.

[img] PDF (Assessment of Socio-Cultural Risks in Relation to HIV Transmission in Pastoralist Community of Surma Woreda, SNNPR, Ethiopia)
ALL TOGETHER(26).pdf - Accepted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

Download (338kB) | Request a copy


Background: The magnitude and depth of HIV/AIDS impacts in sub-Saharan Africa are staggering. Over 36 million individuals are currently living with HIV/AIDS, 95% of whom are from developing countries. In the past, rates of HIV/AIDS in urban populations were greater than in rural areas; more recently, improved and expanded surveillance has shown that HIV prevalence in rural areas is lower than anticipated. Nevertheless, the differences in infection levels between rural and urban areas will be narrowed over time. The absolute number of HIV-infected persons in rural areas may equal or surpass the number in urban areas. In Ethiopia most of the studies on HIV/AIDS focused on urban centers; however, on the other hand, evidence has shown that the prevalence of HIV infection is increasing rapidly in rural areas. Pastoralists are among the marginalized people with diverse cultures, and these cultural practices have been cited to be fueling HIV transmission in pastoralist areas. Surma is pastoralist woreda found in Bench Maji zone (SNNPR), 750km from Addis Ababa. Different socio-cultural practices are predominantly performed in the community which may facilitate HIV in the community. Objective: This study aimed to identify socio-cultural risk factors for the transmission of HIV infection in pastoral communities of Surma woreda, SNNPR. Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted using quantitative method involving 447 study participants in the age range of 15-49 who are residing 18 kebeles in Surma woreda. A qualitative method was also applied involving elders, influential peoples, traditional healers and community leaders. The study was conducted from Dec 2005 to Feb 2006, in surma woreda, Bench Maji zone, SNNPR. Results: The result of the study was based on 416 respondents who adequately responded to the questionnaire interview. Findings revealed over 88.2% of the study population were illiterate and 41.9% of married males involved causal sex during the post natal period of their wives. Over fifty two percent of respondents never heard about HIV\AIDS. 90.4% and 90.1 % of the respondents had been pierced skin and body tattooing respectively. According to the graded risk practices score, 70.4% of participants were among the high risk while 29.6% were at low risk category. Their awareness and knowledge about HIV\AIDS was less. In addition, the identified socio-cultural practices (skin piercing, body tattooing, tooth extraction, hair shaving, traditional surgery and cultural rituals) were found to fuel the transmission among the study population .Their sexual behavior also had a grave consequence for the wide spread of HIV\AIDS. The awareness towards VCT and willingness to undergo VCT was also low. Conclusions: The nearly created linkage, which is starting sex some of the surma people with nonendogenous people, will make the identified socio-cultural practices to play a considerable role in the transmission of HIV spread. In addition lower status of awareness and knowledge about HIV\AIDS, as well as dreadfully high illiteracy level made the study population at critical level for HIV spread. The liberal sexual practices with the recently amplifying level of alcoholism made horrible the probability of HIV spread in the community. Recommendation: Multidisciplinary survey teams urgently need to raise local awareness and knowledge of HIV\AIDS using culturally appropriate methods, and reduce high-risk behaviors to prevent the spread of HIV.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA1001 Forensic Medicine. Medical jurisprudence. Legal medicine
Divisions: Africana
Depositing User: Vincent Mpoza
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2018 13:06
Last Modified: 29 Jun 2018 13:06

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item