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Fear of deportation may limit legal immigrants' access to HIV/AIDS-related care: a survey of Swedish language school students in Northern Sweden
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7087-1467
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Microbiology, Infectious Diseases. (Clas Ahlm ; Arcum)
Skaraborg Inst Res & Dev, Skövde, Sweden.
2012 (English)In: Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health, ISSN 1557-1912, E-ISSN 1557-1920, Vol. 14, no 1, 39-47 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The increasing rates of HIV infection that are currently being reported in high-income countries can be partly explained by migration from countries with generalized epidemics. Yet, early diagnosis of HIV/AIDS in immigrants remains a challenge. This study investigated factors that might be limiting immigrants' access to HIV/AIDS care. Data from 268 legal immigrant students of two Swedish language schools in Northern Sweden were analyzed using logistic regression. Thirty-seven percent reported reluctance to seek medical attention if they had HIV/AIDS. Fear of deportation emerged as the most important determinant of reluctance to seek care after adjusting for socio-demographic factors, knowledge level, stigmatizing attitudes and fear of disclosure. Targeted interventions should consider the heterogeneity of migrant communities and the complex interplay of various factors which may impede access to HIV-related services. The myth about deportation because of HIV/AIDS should be countered.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer-Verlag New York, 2012. Vol. 14, no 1, 39-47 p.
National Category
Infectious Medicine Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-48354DOI: 10.1007/s10903-011-9509-yISI: 000299123200006PubMedID: 21814777OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-48354DiVA: diva2:448913
Note

Published online: 4 August 2011

Available from: 2011-10-18 Created: 2011-10-18 Last updated: 2017-12-08Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. A world on the move: challenges and opportunities for hiv/aids and tuberculosis care and prevention among vulnerable migrant populations in Sweden
Open this publication in new window or tab >>A world on the move: challenges and opportunities for hiv/aids and tuberculosis care and prevention among vulnerable migrant populations in Sweden
2013 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Background: Migration is a global phenomenon that characterize today’s globalized world. Although, the relationship between migration and health in the host countries is not always negative, many countries, including Sweden are concerned about possible spread of infectious diseases of public health significance such as HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB). Moreover, apart from disease profiles, migrants also have different socio-cultural backgrounds, which may challenge health care access and provision.

Objectives: To investigate, identify, and delineate potential challenges of relevance in the care and prevention of communicable diseases of public health significance in general and particularly HIV/AIDS and TB among migrants from countries where these infections are endemic, and eventually generate knowledge that could inform policies and practice.

Methods: Data for this thesis were collected in four of the five counties of the Northern region in Sweden. Quantitative and qualitative methods were used including a survey of 268 migrant students in two language schools (I & II); an interview study with 10 care providers caring for patients with migrant backgrounds and observations of care encounters (III) and an interview study with 15 care providers experienced in screening migrants (IV). Descriptive and logistic regression analyses were used to summarize survey data whereas a thematic analysis approach was applied to the qualitative data within the interpretive description framework.

Results: The students scored on average low on both HIV/AIDS and TB knowledge and displayed misconceptions and negative attitudes towards the two diseases and infected/sick persons. Knowledge level and attitude could be predicted by prior knowledge, years of previous education and geographic origin. In contrast, no association was found between being screened and the level of TB knowledge or attitude towards TB and infected/sick persons. However, fear of being deported appeared to be the main predictor of reluctance to seek HIV/AIDS care after controlling for socio-demographic factors, knowledge level, stigmatizing attitudes and fear of disclosure. Health care providers described complex and intertwined challenges that influenced both care delivery and receipt. The challenges described included language, the socio-cultural diversity within migrant groups and between migrants and the caregivers. These often resulted in divergent perceptions and expectations about care and caring. The participants highlighted the complexities of caring for diverse patients within different institutions with conflicting policies and frameworks. They also described the difficulties the migrants face in navigating the Swedish care system.

Conclusions: This thesis illuminates complex challenges in the care of migrants. The findings emphasize the need for multilevel strategies in order to remove identified barriers. This requires accommodating diversity by improving care providers’ cultural competence and migrants’ health literacy. It further requires policies and practices that emphasize health services responsiveness in order to provide equal access and equitable care. Finally, it entails revisiting existing policies and legislative frameworks to promote a change in ways of thinking about and approaching migration, HIV/AIDS and TB issues, to address the specific vulnerabilities of mobile populations in a world on the move.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå Universitet, 2013. 78 p.
Series
Umeå University medical dissertations, ISSN 0346-6612 ; 1555
Keyword
HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Caregivers/caregiving, Culture/cultural competence, Discrimination, Diversity, Immigrants/Migrants, Interpretive description, Language/linguistics, Interpreters, Thematic analysis, Screening, Sweden
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Research subject
Public health
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-67636 (URN)978-91-7459-570-3 (ISBN)
Public defence
2013-04-19, Sal 135, Allmänmedicin, Byggnad 9 A, Norrlands universitetssjukhus, Umeå, 09:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-03-27 Created: 2013-03-25 Last updated: 2015-04-29Bibliographically approved

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