Role of Spirituality in Enhancing Quality of Life
in Women with HIV in Cambodia
1. PROBLEM AND RATIONALE
Cambodia has been experiencing the most devastating HIV/AIDS epidemic in South-East Asia compared to all other countries in the region (NCHADS, 2009). With the mounting of an effective national public health anti-retroviral treatment program, HIV/AIDS prevention and care in Cambodia have been very successful, given its resource constraints. To date, the government has used clinical indicators such as CD4 and HIV RNA viral load to evaluate program effectiveness. These indicators have value but do not address the quality of life (QOL) of the women participating in the anti-viral programs.
Of 75,000 adults 15-49 years of age living with HIV/AIDS, 20,000 are women over 15 years old in Cambodia (UNADIS, 2008). These women are known to be vulnerable in many areas, including reproduction, child care, and other family functions compared to men. However, in Cambodia, HIV-positive women have been relatively unattended. Little is known about their health care, personal needs and quality of life in women struggling with the infection. Some empirical evidence shows that spirituality has been an instrumental component to coping among HIV-positive persons. Additionally, none has known about the role of spirituality in HIV-positive Cambodian women. Religion beliefs and values unique to Southeast Asia may react to their HIV status differently from women in other parts of the world.
2. General research objectives
General objective of this study is to see the relationship between spirituality and the quality of life (QOL) among HIV-positive women aged over 18 years old in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. The QOL will be measured using the Khmer (Cambodian language) version-World Health Organization Quality of Life- HIV (WHOQOL-HIV). These findings of this study will add important information to people who involve in the development of the intervention in care and support for women with HIV/AIDS.
3. Specific study aims
This study holds 4 specific aims as follows:
A. Obtain the level of reliability of the newly translated Khmer version-WHOQOL HIV instrument
B. Determine the association of the QOL with some clinical factors (e.g., CD4 cell count, AIDS stage, duration of HIV infection, and HIV-related symptom experience) in women with HIV
C. Determine the association of the QOL with demographic factors (e.g., age, marital status, education) among HIV-positive women
D. Understand the association between spirituality and the QOL among in women with after controlling for clinical and demographic factors
A. Study design
This proposed study represents a cross-sectional design. The population under study will be women who follow up in a HIV clinic providing free of charge treatment and care in a resource-limited setting, Phnom Penh, Cambodia. Women who monthly visit to the clinic will get chance to participate the study over 6 months from...