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Examining HIV prevalence and cultural implications of HIV awareness in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Althobaiti, Kamal (2019) Examining HIV prevalence and cultural implications of HIV awareness in the kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Master Essay, University of Pittsburgh.

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Abstract

The hazards of HIV and its susceptibilities among adolescents and young adults are well documented globally, with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) being no exception. The KSA appears to have a low HIV prevalence, with an incidence of 1.5 cases among every 100,000 citizens per year and 12 among 100,000 workers from countries other than the KSA. Identifying more accurate data on the prevalence of HIV is essential for planning and addressing the epidemic in a more organized manner.
In terms of public health significance, determining the accurate number of people living with HIV (PLWH) will help in halting the further spread of the infection and in maintaining low prevalence rates in the future. The low prevalence of HIV in the KSA general population could be attributed to the region’s religious and cultural norms. However, stigma associated with HIV has hindered individuals at risk and those living with HIV from seeking screening, treatment and accepting help. Therefore, the reported prevalence rates of HIV in the KSA might be under documented.
Information regarding factors that lead to new cases of HIV being underreported was obtained from various sources. Data on HIV trends and prevalence was accessed from the KSA national reports, media reports, published articles and peer-reviewed journals. The results show that from 1984-2001, people diagnosed with HIV were more likely to be foreign workers (78.7%) than Saudi citizens (21.3%). The cumulative number of Saudi citizens diagnosed with HIV from 1984-2017 was 7,615, including 427 new cases in 2017, with the majority of new HIV cases being among 20-29 years of age (29%) and 30-39 years of age (28%). The prevalence of HIV among Saudi citizens by the end of 2017 was 0.03%. The purpose of this paper is to discuss factors that may have led to the perception of low HIV prevalence in the KSA and to assess critical issues surrounding HIV awareness in the kingdom. This essay stresses the importance of educating people to accurately report the true mode of transmission and also the need for the KSA’s Ministry of Health to reach out to the community to encourage organizing HIV awareness programs.


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Details

Item Type: Other Thesis, Dissertation, or Long Paper (Master Essay)
Status: Unpublished
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Althobaiti, Kamalkaa115@pitt.edukaa115
Contributors:
ContributionContributors NameEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairFrank, Lindafrankie@pitt.edufrankieUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberChen, Yuecheny@pitt.educhenyUNSPECIFIED
Committee MemberAl-Zaiti, Salahssa33@pitt.eduAl-ZaitiUNSPECIFIED
Date: 29 April 2019
Date Type: Submission
Number of Pages: 44
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Graduate School of Public Health > Infectious Diseases and Microbiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master Essay
Refereed: Yes
Date Deposited: 16 Oct 2019 16:29
Last Modified: 16 Oct 2019 16:35
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/36066

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