The Experience of Persons with HIV / AIDS in Addis Ababa and their Relations with Institutions Rendering Health and Counseling , Services

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This research has foc used on investi gating a range of issues re lated to the chall enges being faced by Persons With HIV / AIDS (PW As). Through establishing trust among selected PW As, particular emphasis was put on examining the nature of the problems they are faced with in their day-to-day lives in the process of interaction with spo Llses, families, friends and institutions that are rendering sC'rv ices for persons with HIV. The study has confirmed that the stigma attached to HIV!.-\IDS is one of the most crucial factors that affect the readiness of PW As to disclose or not to disclose their sero status to their partners. It is difficult for them to change their sexual havi r even if this involves a potential danger of infecting the other partner. It has been revealed in this study that there are differn ti al responses by spouses and caregivers to PW As. Some families and partners have managed to accept the situation in which a member of their family and/or spouse is found and try to offer their support to let him/her live positively with AIDS. On l. he other hand, there have been instances where the revelation of one's sero status caLlses instability and separation of partners. The stigma towards PW As and lack of sufficient knowledge on the part of caregivers has many PW A from getting the necessary care and die with dignity.