6/01/2009

HIV/AIDS preventive risk-appraisal of rural African-American women in Mississippi Delta: An approach for cultural-specific communitybased intervention

Ademola M. Omishakin, MPH, PhD, MBA, Department of Natural Science & Environmental Health, Mississippi Valley State University, 14000 Highway 82 West #7298, Itta Bena, MS 38941, 662-254-3391, aomishak@mvsu.edu, P. Bassey Williams, PhD, CHES, Global Health Education and Health Promotion Partnership Inc., 8907 Mayflower Road, Suite 5B, Baltimore, MD 21237, and Debra Patton Lloyd, MS, PhDc, Department of Agriculture & Information Science, Mississippi State University, 130 lloyd Ricks, Box 9731, Mississippi State, MS 39762.

The increasing number of African-American women with HIV/AIDS in Southern United States demands a renewed commitment to prevention efforts targeted toward African-American population. Addressing this problem requires innovative approaches for the planning and implementation of a competent culturally sensitive AIDS prevention, health promotion and education programs for African American women in rural Mississippi.

This study utilized an ethnogender-specific AIDS survey instrument to assess the knowledge, feeling/attitudes, beliefs and behaviors of African-American women in rural Mississippi toward HIV infections. We carried out a cross-sectional, convenience sample survey of 300 adolescent and adult African American women, aged 18-55 years, utilizing the person-to-person interview and postal mail methods. Multivariate analysis of ANOVA procedure found significant differences between age groups, level of education, income and employment dimensions, and the dependent variables of knowledge, attitude/feelings and behavior of the rural Mississippi women about HIV/AIDS and related high-risk sexual practices.

Results further revealed considerable lack of knowledge, misinformation, poor attitude and high-risk sexual behavior among the subjects in relation to: alcohol and psychoactive drug use, HIV-testing and condom use, exchange of sex for drugs, and money for sex, and high level of stigmatization of HIV-positives/AIDS patients and homosexuals in the community.

Although there were some similarities in correlations between subjects' level of education, income/employment dimension and knowledge level, these were only valid for the young and middle age groups. The study recommends a comprehensive cultural-intensive AIDS and family life education intervention program for Black women in rural Mississippi

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the session, the participant (learner) in this session will be able to

* Identify sexual and other high-risk behaviors influencing the HIV/AIDS among Black women in rural Mississippi;
* Recognize disparities and magnitude of HIV-related problems among black women;
* Discuss appropriate HIV/AIDS intervention programs for African-American women Mississipians.

Keywords: Minority Health, HIV Interventions

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Any relevant financial relationships? No

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