The Human Immunodeficiency Virus ( Hiv ) Essay

865 Words Oct 9th, 2016 4 Pages
Contrasting cases of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in countries such as Nigeria and the United States reveal global similarities and discrepancies in healthcare standards and societal responses to HIV. Specifically, the impact of discrimination and stigma on HIV-positive women presents major social and economic challenges, resulting in poor self-opinion, loss of support networks and employment and inadequate healthcare. Within this context, the term ‘discrimination’ will describe the intentional rejection or ostracising of an individual or group based on prejudiced perceptions of their characteristics, or in this case their HIV status (Liamputtong, 2013, p. 5). Similarly, the term ‘stigma’ refers to the social separation of those with a behaviour or trait that is seen as socially undesirable or unnatural (Corrigan, & Jones, 2014, p. 9). Another key social determinant of HIV is female gender and sexuality, as it introduces gender-specific complications to their HIV diagnosis and daily management. Key examples of gender-specific determinants may include exploration of the female maternal role, and the repercussions of gender inequality in the context of accessing adequate healthcare. ‘Gender’ describes the cultural, mental and social factors that form the notion of male and female characteristics (Nwanna, 2010, p. 91). This differs from ‘sexuality’ which encompasses the beliefs, thoughts and practices involved in expressing one’s sexual experience, and is influenced…

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