Addressing the Needs of Women Living with HIV in Vietnam

Project Description

Women living with HIV/AIDS (WLHIV) confront numerous barriers to accessing health and other social support services. To improve access to and quality of services for WLHIV in Vietnam, the Center for Global Health & Development (CGHD) and Vietnamese collaborators—the Center for Community Health and Development (COHED) and the Center for the Quality of Life (Life Center)— conducted an assessment of the health and social service needs of WLHIV in Hai Phong and Ho Chi Minh City. WLHIV peer leaders from both cities were part of the research team. Based on the results of the needs assessment, COHED and Life Center implemented programs to improve WLHIV access to and quality of health and social services.

One year after the needs assessment, the CGHD evaluated the impacts of the programs. After the interventions, statistically significant improvements included increases in WLHIV knowledge of, use of, and referral to antiretroviral therapy (ART); ART adherence and treatment for side effects; knowledge and use of preventing mother-to-child transmission of HIV (PMTCT) services; use of sexually transmitted infection (STI) services; knowledge of treatment for opportunistic infections and tuberculosis; knowledge of, participation in, and referral to people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA) support groups; knowledge of, use of, and referral to sexual and reproductive health services; knowledge of and referral to legal aid services; knowledge of and referral to micro-credit and income generation services; use of income generation services; knowledge of gender-based violence (GBV) and GBV services; availability of GBV counseling, medical care and referrals in health services; an increase in availability of GBV psychological counseling and support in social services; and greater attention to GBV among service providers, including training on GBV that was either completed or soon to be conducted.

Project Details

Principal Investigator Lisa Messersmith
Boston University Co-Investigators Lora Sabin, Katherine Semrau
Collaborators
  • Center for Community Health and Development (COHED)
  • Center for the Quality of Life
Country(ies) Vietnam
Dates of Research 2008–2010
Donor/Funder