Epidemiological data indicate that HIV and AIDS are disproportionately affecting American Indians. Specific to American Indian men identifying as gay, bisexual, two-spirit or who have same-sex experiences, this study assessed HIV-risk behaviours and barriers to testing, prevention and treatment efforts. A rapid assessment model was utilised as an indigenous-supporting research design. Rigour and thoroughness were achieved via multiple validation procedures. Central themes surrounding barriers to HIV prevention included social discrimination, low self-esteem and substance use. Findings suggest the underutilisation of condoms due to ineffective placement and limited availability in popular locations among gay, bisexual and two-spirit individuals. Participants indicated that HIV testing is occurring less frequently and that testing was not available after hours or weekends. Barriers to treatment included a mistrust of the current healthcare system, a perceived lack of support from the Indian Health Service for AIDS care and a lack of transportation to healthcare appointments. Lastly, participants discussed and supported culturally-sensitive treatment services. This study calls attention to the value of an American Indian-specific HIV/AIDS service organisation, the presence of indigenous service providers in the community and culturally-sensitive healthcare providers.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The Venezuelan Amerindians were, until recently, free of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. However, in 2007, HIV-1 infection was detected for the first time in the Warao Amerindian population living in the Eastern part of Venezuela, in the delta of the Orinoco river. The aim of this study was to analyze the genetic diversity of the HIV-1 circulating in this population.
The pol genomic region was sequenced for 16 HIV-1 isolates and for some of them, sequences from env, vif and nef genomic regions were obtained. All HIV-1 isolates were classified as subtype B, with exception of one that was classified as subtype C. The 15 subtype B isolates exhibited a high degree of genetic similarity and formed a highly supported monophyletic cluster in each genomic region analyzed. Evolutionary analyses of the pol genomic region indicated that the date of the most recent common ancestor of the Waraos subtype B clade dates back to the late 1990s.
At least two independent introductions of HIV-1 have occurred in the Warao Amerindians from Venezuela. The HIV-1 subtype B was successfully established and got disseminated in the community, while no evidence of local dissemination of the HIV-1 subtype C was detected in this study. These results warrant further surveys to evaluate the burden of this disease, which can be particularly devastating in this Amerindian population, with a high prevalence of tuberculosis, hepatitis B, among other infectious diseases, and with limited access to primary health care.
PLoS ONE 07/2012; 7(7):e40626. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0040626 · 3.23 Impact Factor
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: BackgroundAmerican Indian/Alaska Native (AI/AN) men who have sex with men (MSM) are at high risk of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)
acquisition and transmission.
PurposeThis study aimed to investigate a potential area of focus for HIV prevention interventions by assessing the impact of sexual
risk cognitions on sexual risk-taking among AI/AN MSM.
MethodsAI/AN MSM (N = 173) from a national cross-sectional survey were analyzed.
ResultsReporting more frequent sexual risk cognitions overall (high sexual risk cognitions) was associated with multiple HIV risk
factors including unprotected anal intercourse and serodiscordant unprotected anal intercourse. Participants with high sexual
risk cognitions had a 2.3 (95% Confidence Interval: 1.1, 4.7) times greater odds of engaging in unprotected anal intercourse
regardless of childhood sexual abuse, depression, and alcohol dependence. Most individual sexual risk cognitions were associated
with unprotected anal intercourse, serodiscordant unprotected anal intercourse, or both.
ConclusionsResults suggest that sexual risk cognitions may be a productive area for further work on HIV prevention among AI/AN MSM.
KeywordsMSM–American Indian–Alaska native–HIV/AIDS–Sexual risk cognitions
Annals of Behavioral Medicine 12/2011; 42(3):370-380. DOI:10.1007/s12160-011-9302-0 · 4.20 Impact Factor
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