Poverty-related stressors and HIV/AIDS transmission risks in two South African communities
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Community stress associated with poverty is related to health risks and poor health outcomes. Perceived community stress is specifically related to HIV transmission risk behaviors in the United States, but research bas not examined these relationships in southern Africa, the region of the world with the highest rates of HIV infection and among the greatest poverty. Men (N=464) and women (N=531) living in impoverished adjacent communities distinguished by race (e.g., indigenous African and Coloured) completed anonymous surveys of perceptions of 10 poverty-related community stressors and measures of HIV risk-related behaviors. Indigenous African and Coloured communities differed in their perceptions of stressors, with Africans consistently viewing the 10 community stressors as more serious problems. In addition, perceived seriousness of lacking basic living resources was related to higher risk for HIV among Africans. Perceived community stress was also related to alcohol and drug use, but substance use did not mediate the association between perceived community stress and HIV risks. In the Coloured community, perceived community stressors were related to drug use, but percived community stressors were not associated with HIV risks. These findings extend the findings of previous research to show that povertyrelated stressors are associated with HIV transmission risks in some poverty-stricken communities and that these associations are not mediated by substance use.
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- Poverty-related stressors and HIV/AIDS transmission risks in two South African communities
Journal of Urban Health
Volume 82, Issue 2 , pp 237-249
- Cover Date
- Print ISSN
- Online ISSN
- Additional Links
- HIV/AIDS prevention
- Southern Africa
- Heath Behavior
- Author Affiliations
- 1. Department of Psychology, University of Connecticut, 406 Babbidge Road, 06269, Storrs, CT, USA
- 2. Social Aspects of HIV/AIDS and Health, Human Sciences Research Council, P. Bag X9182, 8000, Cape Town, South Africa