AN ANALYSIS OF HIV RISK PRACTICES AMONGST WOMEN OF CHILD-BEARING AGE IN UYO LGA
The study investigated and analyzed the HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East Local Government Area of Edo State.
A sample of 356 child-bearing women were randomly selected from the target population using the multistage (cluster) sampling technique. A 15-item close-ended multiple choice questionnaire was designed by the researcher for data collection.
The findings revealed that Owan East Women of child-bearing age engage in HIV risk practices and that level of education has a significant influence on the HIV risk practices amongst Owan East women of child-bearing area. The study further showed that the women do not use condom and some indulge in sex for material reward. It was concluded that efforts should be made to provide health education to women on healthy sexual behaviour: the benefits of condom use and the need to indulge in safe sex.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Title page i
Table of Contents vii
CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION
Background to the Study 1
Statement of the Problem 4
Purpose of the Study 5
Significance of the Study 5
Research Questions 6
Scope of Study (Delimitation) 7
Definition of Terms 8
CHAPTER TWO: REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE
Identification of Aids: Causative Agent, Signs/Symptoms 10
Modes of Transmission cum Risk Practices 14
National Sero-Prevalence (Epidemiology of HIV/AIDS
In Nigeria) 15
Factors Responsible for the Prevalence of HIV/AIDS
Amongst Women 19
Cultural Practices Promoting HIV Infection 24
Summary of Related Literature 51
CHAPTER THREE: METHOD OF THE STUDY
Research Design 54
Sample and Sampling Technique 54
Method of Data Collection 56
Method of Data Analysis 57
DATA ANALYSIS, PRESENTATION AND DISCUSSION
OF RESULTS 58
CHAPTER FIVE: SUMMARY, FINDINGS, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Appendix (Questionnaire) 81
Background to the Study
This project work focuses on an analysis of HIV risk practices amongst Owan East women of child-bearing age. Owan East L.G.A. is in Edo North Senatorial District.
HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) as defined by the Oxford Concise Reference Dictionary of Biology is the retrovirus that causes AIDS in humans. It has a specific affinity for the helper T cells of its host. The membrane envelope glycoproteins encasing the virus show great variability in their amino-acid sequences, hence the difficulty of preparing an effective AIDS vaccine.
The emergence of the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) on the global scene has been a major source of concern worldwide. It is now a pandemic disease globally. As at December, 1994, one million, twenty-three thousand and seventy- three (1,023073) cumulative AIDS cases in both adults and children, were reported, which represented a 20% increase since January, 1994 (WHO, 2005).
The situation in Nigeria is not different from this global trend. When it was first reported in 1986, the number of HIV positive and reported cases has been on the increase. A film on the actual victims titled: “The Dawn of Reality”, has been produced. The fact that many tens of thousands might be carrying the AIDS virus without full manifestation yet is another dimension to this pandemic disease. The situation may be a little more frightening when the WHO’s projection of 30 – 40 million carrying HIV infection by the year 2000 is considered. A close analysis of the cases reported shows that almost all groups in the society are affected (Inem et al, 2002). AIDS therefore knows no class.
On the other hand, sexual transmission has been widely reported as the singular most important mode of transmission, especially amongst the sexually active and economically productive age bracket of 15 – 49 years, of both gender (FMHSS, 2006). However, the youths who are more sexually active are more susceptible to the disease, since casual and multiple partners’ sexual habit is one of the major causes. The modes of transmission of all sexual transmitted diseases (STDs) is through close contacts and sexual intercourse while AIDS is both through sexual intercourse, blood/blood product transfusion and from mother to the infant (NDHS, 2007). Since AIDS is a life-long disease that will ultimately lead to death, since there is no known cure yet and no vaccine for prevention, all efforts to contain the disease center around education for behavioural change. The entire population of a country, therefore, has to be segmented and properly targeted for AIDS Education and information (Aboyeji, 2003).
Statement of the Problem
It has been discovered that close contact such as unhealthy sexual behaviours constitute the highest risk factor causing HIV infection. In spite of this most people are yet to change their high risk lifestyles. Consequently, the primary aim of this study seeks to determine HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East Local Government Area of Edo State. An analysis of HIV risk practices becomes very important as it provides the early signals and warnings of a serious population problem, which might translate in reduced productivity in the country. Since HIV/AIDS is a life-long disease that will ultimately lead to death, since there is no known cure yet and no vaccine, all efforts to contain the disease centre around education for behavioural change.
Purpose of the Study
This study seeks to investigate and analyze the HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East Local Government Area of Edo State, and to thereby promote behaviours that prevent the transmission of HIV/AIDS.
Significance of the Study
An analysis of HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East Local Government Area will enable the entire population of Nigeria to be segmented and properly targeted for HIV/AIDS Education and information; for raising the level of understanding on the nature and modes of HIV/AIDS; developing the right attitudes that will assist individuals to reject biased information/myths relating to HIV/AIDS infection; developing responsible decision-making behaviour that will protect women of child-bearing age and others from HIV/AIDS; and developing in the youths the necessary skills for healthy human relationship.
In order to justify an analysis of HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in this local government, the following questions were raised for the study:
i. Has Owan East women of child-bearing age significantly exhibited HIV risk practices?
ii. Is there a significant difference between Owan women of child-bearing age who are indulging in unprotected sex and those who are not indulging in it?
iii. Has level of education any influence on HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East L.G.A.?
In an attempt to provide answers to the foregoing questions, the following hypotheses were tested in the study:
Ho1 Owan East women of child-bearing age have not significantly exhibited HIV risk practices.
Ho2 There is no significant difference between Owan women of child-bearing age who indulge in unprotected sex and those who did not indulge in it.
Ho3 Level of education has no significant influence on HIV risk practices amongst Owan East women of childbearing age.
Scope of Study (Delimitation)
Due to financial constraint and time factor, this study was restricted to a sample of some selected 356 women of child-bearing age from the target population.
Definition of Terms
1. AIDS - (Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome) A disease of humans characterized by defective cell-mediated immunity and increased susceptibility to infections.
2. Glycoproteins: - A protein with an admixture of glycogen.
3. HIV – (Human Immuno-deficiency Virus) The retrovirus that causes AIDS in humans.
4. HIV Risk Practices - Practices and behaviours and lifestyles which predisposes one to HIV infection.
5. Retrovirus - An ribonucleic and (RNA) – containing virus that converts its RNA into Dioxiribinucleic acid (DNA) by means of the enzyme reverse transcriptase, enabling it to become integrated into its host’s DNA.
6. STD - Sexually transmitted diseases.
The purpose of this study was to investigate and analyze the HIV risk practices amongst women of child-bearing age in Owan East Local Government Area of Edo State.
At the onset of this work, the researcher carried out a review of related literature to provide a general framework for understanding the nature of HIV in terms of modes of transmission and risk practices and how to prevent it from escalating through education strategy.
In the course of the study, questions were raised culminating in the formulation of research hypotheses. Questionnaires were drawn in line with these research hypotheses. The questionnaires were designed by the researcher and thoroughly checked by the project supervisor and two other of his colleagues.
The instrument used for data collection was the questionnaire which was administered to the respondents to get their responses on HIV risk practices, and their level of education. A sample of 356 child-bearing women were randomly selected for the study. The data collected were analyzed using chi-square and simple percentages.
The findings revealed that Owan East women of child-bearing age engage in HIV risk practices and that level of education has a significant influence on the HIV risk practices. The study further showed that Owan East women of child-bearing age do not use condom and some indulge in sex for material reward.
From the foregoing, it is evident that individual life style significantly influence the spread of HIV/AIDS. Although, HIV has no known cure yet, prevention should be hinged on education for behavioural change. Essentially, what is important is investigating risk practices and using education as an instrument for achieving changes in knowledge, attitudes and practices. Some infections start as a result of no fault of the patient such as mother to infant transmission, circumcision and female genital mutilation. Nevertheless, people are bound to indulge in sexual acts, child-bearing, circumcision, blood transfusions etc but of utmost importance is the dissemination of adequate information on healthy life styles, healthy sexual behaviours and practices so that we could have an infection-free life.
On the other hand, efforts should be made to provide health education to women on the benefits of condom use and the need to indulge in safe sex.
In the light of the above, the researcher therefore recommends that:
i. Government should fund the departments of health education in all Nigerian universities and other levels of our educational institutions;
ii. Public campaigns should be intensified on the protective benefits of the use of condom, with an especial target at the sexually active group.
iii. Only qualified persons should be issued with licences to open and operate medicare centres to avoid complication that will arise from faulty prescription of unscreened blood and the use of unsterilized injecting needles;
iv. With the current increasing level of the epidemic in rural areas, there is need to increase intervention efforts in these areas.
v. The high level of HIV prevalence amongst women with only primary and secondary education calls for focused and appropriate interventions to target these groups.
vi. A population based survey to determine the HIV prevalence in the general population should be undertaken to improve our understanding of the epidemic.
vii. The capacity of the NASCP staff should be enhanced to effectively coordinate surveillance activities.
viii. Changes in knowledge, attitudes and practices(KAP) must come as expressions of individual choices; our educational systems should provide sufficient information to increase awareness of desirable options. The time to start is now if we are to achieve the most desirable objective of achieving health for all; improve productivity and enhance the economic stability of our nation..