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Original Research

Should They Also Have Babies? Community Attitudes Toward Sexual and Reproductive Rights of People Living With HIV/AIDS in Nigeria

Authors:

Zubairu Iliyasu ,

Department of Community Medicine, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria; Section of Public Health, School of Health and Related Research, the University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK
About Zubairu
MBBS, PhD
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Hadiza S. Galadanci,

Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
About Hadiza S.
MBBS, MS
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Yusuf A. Ibrahim,

Department of Community Medicine, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
About Yusuf A.
MBBS
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Musa Babashani,

Department of Medicine, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
About Musa
MBBS
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Mohammed S. Mijinyawa,

Department of Medicine, Bayero University, Kano, Nigeria
About Mohammed S.
MBBS
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Melynda Simmons,

Department of Health Policy and Vanderbilt Institute for Global Health, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
About Melynda
BS
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Muktar H. Aliyu

Department of Health Policy and Vanderbilt Institute for Global Health, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
About Muktar H.
MD, DrPH
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Abstract

Background

People living with HIV have the right to healthy, satisfying sex lives and to appropriate services to ensure their sexual and reproductive health, including having healthy children. The reproductive rights of people living with HIV/AIDS are, however, often met with skepticism and discrimination, despite recent advances in HIV treatment.

Objective

To assess the attitudes of community members in Kano, Nigeria, toward the right of persons living with HIV/AIDS to have healthy sexual relationships and bear children.

Methods

A cross-section of 399 adults was interviewed using pretested structured questionnaires. Logistic regression analysis was used to obtain adjusted estimates for predictors of agreement with the rights of persons with HIV/AIDS to bear children.

Findings

A substantial proportion of respondents (28.6%) strongly agreed and agreed (10.5%) that persons with HIV/AIDS should not be allowed to marry. More than a fifth of the respondents disagreed (16.0%) and strongly disagreed (8.0%) with the rights of HIV-infected persons to bear children. Agreement with the statement “HIV-infected persons should have biological children” was independently associated with higher educational status (adjusted odds ratio: 2.26, 95% confidence interval: 1.82-6.73) and awareness of prevention of mother-to-child HIV transmission effectiveness (adjusted odds ratio: 2.53, 95% confidence interval: 1.92-5.37). Of those who agreed that HIV-infected persons should have children (n = 253), 17.8% and 26.1% strongly agreed and agreed, respectively, that persons living with HIV/AIDS should be restricted to having fewer children. Further, 11.5% and 4.8% of respondents disagreed and strongly disagreed, respectively, that infertile HIV-infected couples should receive fertility treatment.

Conclusions

People living with HIV/AIDS face discriminatory attitudes to their reproductive rights in northern Nigeria. There is a need for effective, culturally appropriate information, education, and communication approaches to improving community perceptions of sexual and reproductive rights of people living with HIV/AIDS.

How to Cite: Iliyasu, Z., Galadanci, H.S., Ibrahim, Y.A., Babashani, M., Mijinyawa, M.S., Simmons, M. and Aliyu, M.H., 2017. Should They Also Have Babies? Community Attitudes Toward Sexual and Reproductive Rights of People Living With HIV/AIDS in Nigeria. Annals of Global Health, 83(2), pp.320–327. DOI: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.aogh.2017.05.001
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Published on 27 May 2017.
Peer Reviewed

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