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Influence of Culture and Stigmatisation on HIV transmission programme

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INFLUENCE OF CULTURE AND STIGMATISATION ON HIV TRANSMISSION PROGRAMME HIV (Human Immune-Deficiency Virus) has spread all over the world since it was first reported thirty years ago. Africa, and certainly Lesotho, has gone through this dreadful disease. Doctors, Scientists and Health experts all around the world have been putting in extra efforts through researches, discussions, and by assisting the general public, especially the victims in order to limit the spread. HIV is transmitted from one person to another through sexual intercourse, blood contact, sharing needles and one of the most common one in Lesotho is the mother- to- child transmission. Every year in Lesotho an average of 7,000 babies become infected with HIV. Eventually with hard work and effort in finding a solution to this problem, one of Lesotho's poorest health centers have succeeded in carrying out a prevention of mother-to-child transmission. As it is mentioned in the article, the PMTCT programme is part of the Lesotho government's scheme to get faster worldwide access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support by 2010. ...read more.


programme, but will also have an effect on the people suffering from this virus. Stigma causes an unwillingness to take an HIV test and to get a proper medication which means, that more people are diagnosed late when the virus has already progressed to AIDS, making treatment less successful and causing early death. Self-stigma and fear of a negative reaction from their society can hold back efforts to implement a prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programmes. The widespread fear of stigma is held responsible for the low uptake of prevention against mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) programmes in Lesotho. Despite the fact that the service is available in most of the clinics in the country, only 26% of pregnant women benefited themselves from this opportunity to protect their unborn children. Over half refused to take a test, and nearly half of those who were tested positive did not go on to accept treatment due to 'self-stigma' and cultural beliefs. ...read more.


So how can improvement be made in prevailing over this stigma, discrimination, and cultural beliefs that have been a barrier to mother-to-child HIV transmission programme prevention and care? The answer is 'Education'. Education plays a very important role in reducing stigma and discrimination. All over the world, stigmatisation of people living with HIV has increased by misunderstanding and misinformation. This not only has a harmful impact on people living with HIV, but can also increase the spread of HIV by discouraging people from testing and treatment. There is lack of knowledge in most people, in Lesotho. They need to be educated, so that they are able to face the discrimination, stigma and denial that they encounter. Schools should teach respect and understanding. Religious leaders should preach open-mindedness and the media should criticize intolerance. Certainly this will bring a positive change to Lesotho's Prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission programme (PMTCT). Name: Laraib Hussain Class: S5 Subject: English Language Criteria: Assignment 3 - (Using the stimulus text "Culture threatens HIV transmission programme", by Thabo Mohale) Title: Influence of Culture and Stigmatisation on HIV transmission programme ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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