Sexual Prejudice and Comfort to Provide Services to Men Who Have Sex with Men Among HIV Healthcare Workers in Western Kenya: Role of Interpersonal Contact

Sylvia Shangani, Becky Genberg, Abigail Harrison, Jennifer Pellowski, Juddy Wachira, Violet Naanyu, Don Operario

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Sexual minority men living in Africa, where many countries criminalize same-sex behavior, are vulnerable to HIV and experience significant barriers to HIV care. Sexual prejudice in healthcare settings is a key contributor to these barriers. Building on social psychological models of prejudice and interpersonal contact at the clinic, we examined the associations between healthcare workers’ sexual prejudice and their comfort to provide care to MSM, and assessed the moderating role of workers’ prior interpersonal contact with MSM. A cross-sectional survey of 147 healthcare workers varying in level of training and expertise working in HIV care organizations was conducted in western Kenya. Sexual prejudice was negatively associated with comfort to provide care to MSM. Prior interpersonal contact with MSM moderated the association between sexual prejudice and comfort to provide care to MSM among nurses/counselors, such that those with low prior contact and high sexual prejudice were the most uncomfortable providing care to MSM. Interventions are needed to address sexual prejudice and encourage positive forms of interpersonal contact with MSM, especially with nurses and counselors who might have more and varied patient interactions, to improve access to the continuum of HIV prevention and care for MSM in Kenya.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalAIDS and behavior
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • Comfort
  • Healthcare workers
  • Interpersonal contact
  • Kenya
  • Sexual prejudice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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