This qualitative, community-based research study explored the influence of gender on community perceptions of HIV/AIDS service needs among African immigrant men and women in Calgary, Canada. A total of 41 key informant participants (24 male, 17 female) from 14 sub-Saharan countries completed individual, semi-structured interviews. Thematic interview analysis results produced four themes directly related to HIV and gender, including different sexual standards for men and women, condom use, infidelity, and the need for dialogue between partners on sex and HIV. Each of these themes was related to a contextual theme of "family breakdown", which resulted from cultural adjustment challenges faced by African immigrants. For men, finding suitable employment was a key issue; for women, isolation was identified as an adjustment factor. The findings suggest that a more holistic conception of HIV prevention may be necessary for programmes to be successful and that HIV/AIDS services should be better integrated with newcomer services.
Abstract African, Caribbean, and Black (ACB) women are greatly overrepresented in new HIV infections in comparison with Canada's general population. Social and structural factors such as HIV-related stigma, gender discrimination, and racial discrimination converge to increase vulnerability to HIV infection among ACB women by reducing access to HIV prevention services. Stigma and discrimination also present barriers to treatment, care, and support and may contribute to mental health problems. We administered a cross-sectional survey to HIV-positive ACB women (n=173) across Ontario in order to examine the relationships between HIV-related stigma, gender discrimination, racial discrimination, and depression. One-third of participants reported moderate/severe depression scores using the Beck Depression Inventory Fast-Screen guidelines. Hierarchical block regression, moderation, and mediation analyses were conducted to measure associations between independent (HIV-related stigma, gender discrimination, racial discrimination), moderator/mediator (social support, resilient coping), and dependent (depression) variables. Findings included: (1) HIV-related stigma was associated with increased depression; (2) resilient coping was associated with reduced depression but did not moderate the influence of HIV-related stigma on depression; and (3) the effects of HIV-related stigma on depression were partially mediated through resilient coping. HIV-related stigma, gender discrimination, and racial discrimination were significantly correlated with one another and with depression, highlighting the salience of examining multiple intersecting forms of stigma. Generalizability of findings may be limited due to nonrandom sampling. Findings emphasize the importance of multi-component interventions, including building resilient coping skills, mental health promotion and assessment, and stigma reduction programs.
To assess, using qualitative methods, the knowledge African Canadians living in Nova Scotia have regarding their options for palliative and end-of-life (EOL) care.
This project engaged caregivers in a Black community in Nova Scotia, Canada, in an exploration of palliative and EOL care. A group of six caregivers who cared for someone who had died were recruited through purposive sampling. The caregivers met three times to (1) discuss their experiences, (2) receive a presentation from the palliative care service, and (3) discuss whether those services would be beneficial. This was followed by a community meeting to discuss the findings.
Knowledge of options for palliative care services is limited. Family centered care may be a reason why "system" is generally not aware of the EOL experiences of African Nova Scotians.
Information about palliative care services is not filtering down to the community in a way that is meaningful to families. Families tend to self-select services that assist them in providing care in the home setting. There is a need to engage Black communities and palliative care services in developing culturally appropriate services.
In this study of Black gay and bisexual men in Toronto, sexually active survey participants reported on their sexual behaviours with male partners of different ethnoracial backgrounds, and interview participants reflected on how their sexual relationships emerged in the context of race and interracial desire. Most survey participants reported sexual relationships with other Black men. Participants were more likely to be insertive with White and other ethnoracial men than with Black men. A significant number of participants who were receptive or versatile with Black partners switched to the insertive role when their sexual partners were not Black. Interview participants ascribed a sense of fulfilment to their sexual relationships with other Black men, but avoided relationships with White men or interpreted such relationships as either purely sexual and/or inflected by their racialised objectification. Others avoided sexual relationships with other Black men or preferred relationships with White men, sometimes in opposition to experiences of oppressive masculinity from some Black partners but mindful of the possibility of racialised encounters with their White partners. Study participants emerge as informed sexual subjects, self-conscious about their sexual relationships and variously inclined to negotiate or resist racialisation and oppression in the private and public spheres.
Through the conceptual lens of the archaic and modern gift, this study aims to examine perceived limitations and facilitators to increasing blood donations within Black communities in Montreal, Canada. The overall objective is to support blood agencies, such as Héma-Québec, in understanding the challenges and opportunities they face in promoting blood donation among Black communities in pluralistic societies.
Thirty-three semi-structured qualitative interviews were conducted with donors and leaders of ethnocultural groups in Montreal: of these, 6 were Héma-Québec employees; 3 were Caribbean blood drive organizers; 14 were leaders of African, Caribbean or Black multiethnic churches and community groups; and finally, 10 were donors, including 2 African, 4 French-speaking Haitian and 4 English-speaking Caribbean.
The existence of multiple Black communities in Montreal reflects the various facilitators and obstacles facing Héma-Québec. Caribbean and African communities have their own experiences with regard to blood donation as well as different relationships with the broader Quebec society, both of which have great impact on how they perceive the cause. Questions of trust, of giving to the family and to the community, as well as perceived social exclusion appear to be fundamental issues for our informants. The current participation of groups interested in bettering the lives of those affected by sickle cell anaemia combined with the fact that leaders felt more comfortable donating to someone close to the community suggests that the promotion of blood donation through this angle would be well received.
Trust issues, perceived discrimination and social exclusion have structural and historical roots that can only be partly overcome with long-term efforts to increase awareness, develop collaborative partnerships and increase institutional efforts to adapt to the challenges of blood donation from Black citizens.
Canada received 22,873 asylum seekers in 2006. The screening of specific health problems in this population seems warranted. This study aims to estimate the prevalence of pathologies that were screened at the PRAIDA health service in Montreal, and to identify associations with certain risk factors.
A retrospective study was conducted on the files of patients who were screened between 2000 and 2004. Demographic and clinical information was compiled for computation of prevalence as well as multiple logistic regression analysis.
Of the 289 files reviewed, 56.7% are for male and 43.3% for female patients, with a mean age of 34 years; 53% are Asians and 38% Africans. 59.4% of subjects received a psychiatric diagnosis (mainly depression and post-traumatic stress disorder). The paraclinical work-up showed: 20.3% anaemia, 9% eosinophilia, 29.7% HBcAb+, 5% HBsAg+, 1.5% hepatitis C (RNA+), 2.5% HIV+ and 45.9% TST+. 10.5% of stool samples contained a pathogen, and serologies for strongyloidiasis and schistosomiasis were positive in 17.3% and 3.9% of samples respectively. Significant associations included female gender with anaemia, African origin with rates of HBcAb and TST+, age with HBcAb and hepatitis C positivity, longer length of stay in Canada with eosinophilia and strongyloidiasis, shorter length of stay with HBcAb, and Asian origin with psychiatric disorders.
This study suggests that the prevalence of screened pathologies as part of the PRAIDA health service work-up are high in this population and therefore warrant continuation of their screening until guidelines are constituted.
Depression is a topic that is often avoided in discussions among Black women for a myriad of reasons. The purpose of this study was to investigate the midlife health of Black women living in the province of Nova Scotia, Canada. This paper will present one of the key findings of this research; midlife depression. It will examine the factors associated with depression among mid-life African Canadian women and how these women deal with depression. A triangulation of qualitative and quantitative methods guided by the principles of participatory action research (PAR) was used in the study. Data collection methods included 50 in-depth interviews of mid-life African Canadian women aged 40-65, focus groups, and workshops as well as the CES-D structured instrument. Purposive sampling method was the primary recruitment strategy and 113 people participated in the study. Although the women rarely openly discussed depression, they described depression as emotional feelings that range from "feeling blue" to being clinically depressed. Women viewed midlife depression as the consequence of a complex set of circumstances and stressors that they face. At midlife, Black women frequently recognize the importance of greater self-care and the need to pay more attention to their health, but they are reluctant to do so because they have to be "strong" in order to deal with their daily experiences of racism. Racism, among other things, leads to accumulated stress and undermines Black women's ability to cope and make healthy life choices. This signifies the implications of these research findings for clinical practice.
To examine ethnic variations in the pathways to care for persons accessing early intervention (EI) services in Ontario.
The pathways to care and the duration of untreated psychosis were assessed for first-episode psychosis patients who entered specialized EI services in Ontario. The sample was assigned to the following ethnic classifications: the White (Caucasian), Black (African descent), and Asian (ancestry from the continent) groups, plus all the "other ethnicities" group.
There were 200 participants: 78% were male; 61% from the White, 15% Black, 13% Asian, and 11% were from the other ethnicities group. At the first point of contact, more participants used nonmedical contacts (12%), such as clergy and naturopathic healers, than psychologists (8%) or psychiatrists (7%). There were no ethnic differences for duration of untreated psychosis (median 22 weeks) or for initiation of help seeking by family/friends (53%), police (15%), or self (33%). After adjusting for relevant clinical and demographic factors, the Asian and other ethnicities groups were 4 and 3 times (respectively) more likely than the White or Black groups (P = .017) to use emergency room services as the first point of contact in the pathways to care. Participants from the Asian group experienced less involuntary hospitalizations (P = .023) than all the other groups. Yet overall, there were many more similarities than significant differences in the pathways to care.
EI services should monitor the pathways to care for young people of diverse ethnic backgrounds to address any disparities in accessing care.
Expressed racial identity and hypertension in a telephone survey sample from Toronto and Vancouver, Canada: do socioeconomic status, perceived discrimination and psychosocial stress explain the relatively high risk of hypertension for Black Canadians?
Canadian research on racial health inequalities that foregrounds socially constructed racial identities and social factors which can explain consequent racial health inequalities is rare. This paper adopts a social typology of salient racial identities in contemporary Canada, empirically documents consequent racial inequalities in hypertension in an original survey dataset from Toronto and Vancouver, Canada, and then attempts to explain the inequalities in hypertension with information on socioeconomic status, perceived experiences with institutionalized and interpersonal discrimination, and psychosocial stress.
Telephone interviews were conducted in 2009 with 706 randomly selected adults living in the City of Toronto and 838 randomly selected adults living in the Vancouver Census Metropolitan Area. Bivariate analyses and logistic regression modeling were used to examine relationships between racial identity, hypertension, socio-demographic factors, socioeconomic status, perceived discrimination and psychosocial stress.
The Black Canadians in the sample were the most likely to report major and routine discriminatory experiences and were the least educated and the poorest. Black respondents were significantly more likely than Asian, South Asian and White respondents to report hypertension controlling for age, immigrant status and city of residence. Of the explanatory factors examined in this study, only educational attainment explained some of the relative risk of hypertension for Black respondents. Most of the risk remained unexplained in the models.
Consistent with previous Canadian research, socioeconomic status explained a small portion of the relatively high risk of hypertension documented for the Black respondents. Perceived experiences of discrimination both major and routine and self-reported psychosocial stress did not explain these racial inequalities in hypertension. Conducting subgroup analyses by gender, discerning between real and perceived experiences of discrimination and considering potentially moderating factors such as coping strategy and internalization of racial stereotypes are important issues to address in future Canadian racial inequalities research of this kind.
Cites: Arch Intern Med. 2001 May 28;161(10):1341-611371264