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Cultural beliefs and disclosure among People Living With HIV&AIDS (PLWHAs) in Msambweni County Referral Hospital, Kwale County, Kenya


 Abstract: Kenya is projected to have 1.5 million people living with HIV, with 42,000 new adult infections occurring each year. Anticipated prevalence of HIV in Kenya, namely in the areas of Kwale and Msambweni, are said to be 4.9%, 4.2%, and 5.7%, correspondingly. Based on current empirical investigations about the disclosure of HIV status among adult sexual partners, it has been shown that the worldwide prevalence of HIV disclosure varies considerably, spanning from 16.7% to 100%. The main objective of this study was to examine the influence of cultural belief systems on HIV&AIDS disclosure status at Msambweni County Referral Hospital in Kwale County, Kenya. Cross-sectional research design and mixed methods approach were employed in this study as a methodological basis. From a target population of 881 PLHIV, a sample size of 253 PLHIV receiving care at the facility was calculated using the Israel, 1992 sample size calculation formula. There were also 12 nurses attending to the PLHIV. Simple random sample method was utilised to recruit PLHIVs into the study, whereas purposive sampling was employed for nurses. Before consenting, the subjects were informed about the research's objective, risks, rights, confidentiality, and benefits. To collect data, structured questionnaires and interview guides were used. From the findings, 55.1% of the 253 primary subjects in the study were female, while 45.1% were male. Majority (49.4%) had lived with HIV for 2–5 years. Key statements that positively encouraged disclosure were: “I believe that revealing my HIV serostatus within my cultural group can contribute to greater awareness and education regarding my HIV serostatus” (M=3.39, SD=1.37), attitude statements: "I believe that medical professionals should play a role in encouraging and promoting HIV serostatus disclosure" (M=4.31, SD=0.88); "I believe people who come forward about their HIV serostatus should be encouraged and offered resources to improve their health." (M= 4.11, SD = 1.10). The study recommended supporting HIV counselling and testing programs and fostering community perspectives on disclosure is crucial. 

Key words: Cultural beliefs, Disclosure, People living with HIV&AIDS, HIV Status 


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