TitleWomen living with HIV in Vietnam: desire for children, use of sexual and reproductive health services, and advice from providers
AuthorsLisa J. Messersmith, Katherine Semrau, Tran Lan Anh, Nguyen Nguyen Nhu Trang, Dao Mai Hoa, Kristin Eifler and Lora Sabin
PublicationReproductive Health Matters. 2012 Dec; 20(39):27-38.
AbstractIn Vietnam, despite the possibility of living healthy sexual lives and bearing children due to the increasing availability of antiretroviral therapy and prevention of mother-to-child transmission services, HIV programming has given little attention to the sexual and reproductive health of people living with HIV. Our study explored factors influencing sexual and reproductive health decision-making, needs, rights and access to services for women living with HIV in Hai Phong and Ho Chi Minh City. Nearly half of the women were sexually active at the time of the study and 15% reported wanting a child or another child. Only 14% of women who did not want a child used contraceptive services in the last six months. More than 40% of women reported being advised, primarily by health care providers and family members, to abstain from sex, and more than 13% who were pregnant at the time of the study said that they had been advised to have an abortion. As with all women, women living with HIV must be informed of their sexual and reproductive rights and must have access to medically sound counseling and services to facilitate informed reproductive health decision-making. Sexual and reproductive health services are urgently needed for this population.