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Many voices: HIV/AIDS in the context of culture - a national study.


Int Conf AIDS. 1996 Jul 7-12;11(1):172 (abstract no. Mo.D.1690). Unique

Objectives: To determine the personal and sociocultural factors related to HIV transmission in selected ethnocultural communities. Methods: This national multi-center study was built on a participatory model, in which representatives of the communities being studied collaborated with the research team to make decisions about the design and implementation of the research. Two theoretical models were used: at the macro level, the sociocultural model of health behaviour adapted from Kleinman and, at the micro level, the social-psychological model of interpersonal behaviour and behaviour change developed by Triandis. Phase I of this study involved audits of relevant community organizations and secondary analysis of public health data to identify six groups to participate in phase II of the study. In phase II, 80 in-depth interviews were conducted and 374 persons participated in 54 focus groups, held in 7 different languages. In phase III, a survey was carried out on condom use in three of the groups; 1059 subjects were used in the analysis. Results: The six communities asked to participate in Phase II of the study were the Latin-American, the Arabic speaking, English speaking Caribbean, Chinese, South-Asian communities, and communities from the Horn of Africa. Some of the issues that affect risk in these communities are: the immigration process, leading to isolation and emotional vulnerability; community attitudes towards sexuality or injection drug use; relationships and roles for women and men; community politics; denial; perceived threat to traditional values; parent/child relationships; and religion. Based upon phase III survey data, the variables that make individuals from Latin-American, English speaking Caribbean, and South-Asian communities most likely to plan to use condoms in a new sexual relationship are: setting the use of a condom as a personal standard, believing there are few barriers for condom use and believing that using condoms coincides with community norms. Conclusions: The multi-method approach of this study allowed a balancing of the strengths and weaknesses of different research methods. The data provided much needed information on a wide range of vulnerable attitudes and high-risk situations related to HIV infection and transmission in Canadian ethnocultural communities.



Information in this article was accurate in January 30, 1997. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.