Factors influencing behavior change among the hiv infected patients: a case of Bungoma county referral hospital, Bungoma county, Kenya.
This study was to investigate the factors influencing behavior change in the HIV infected patients in Bungoma County; a case of Bungoma County Referral Hospital. The study was guided by the following objectives: to assess how the biomedical strategies influence behavior change in HIV infected patients, to establish how the behavioral strategies influence behavior change in HIV infected patients, to investigate the socio-demographic factors influencing behavior change in HIV infected patients, and to determine the structural factors that influence behavior change in HIV infected patients. The study adopted descriptive survey design which was used to obtain information describing the existing phenomenon. The target population was 3,350 and the estimated sample size was 346. Stratified random sampling was used in the study with departments forming relevant stratus. Content validity was used where the researcher shared the research instrument with his supervisor. Split-half method was employed to test the reliability of the instrument. A structured questionnaire was prepared and distributed to the respondents in all the selected departments. 285 questionnaires were completely filled and were used for analysis. Data collected was checked for completeness and analyzed using descriptive statistics. Results for quantitative data were presented in tables and figures while qualitative data was presented in prose. The study found that the biomedical strategies, the behavioral strategies, the structural and the socio-demographical factors could either enhance or inhibit behavior change in HIV infected patients. The biomedical strategies that influenced behavior change were found to be the use of ARVs, use of condoms and treatment of STIs. Those patients who used the ARVs were healthy looking and their immunity was revitalized as the amount of viruses was halted, thus increasing the number of potential sexual partners who are likely to engage in risk sexual behaviors thus putting their sexual partners at risk of being infected. The behavioral strategies such as H.T.C, behavior change communication and education facilitated the uptake of the biomedical strategies as they sensitized the patients on the availability of those services, hence change of their health seeking behavior. The socio-demographic factors such as age, gender and educational standards had a great impact on an individual’s ability to make informed decisions pertaining their sexual lives and the structural factors such as the policies, HIV behavior change programs and laws facilitated utilization of interventions that promoted HIV behavior change.
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