Yale University

Understanding Self and Family Management in HIV-Positive Asian Americans in New York

Principle Investigator(s):

Funder: National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities
Project period: 08/15/2017 - 04/30/2019
Grant Type: Research
Further Detail

Abstract Text:

Asians Americans are among the fastest growing minority groups in the United States, the same as HIV epidemics in Asian Americans. According to the New York City census, Asian American is the only racial/ethnic category showing an increase in HIV diagnosis compared to Black, Hispanic, White and Native American from 2001 to 2013. Asian Americans is “a forgotten population,” whose HIV prevention and treatment needs have long been ignored and specific research on Asian Americans with HIV infections is sparse. A variety of cultural factors may affect individuals seeking HIV-related care and treatment. These factors include HIV stigma and discrimination against homosexuals, lack of social support and/or immigration issues. In addition, among Asian American immigrants, research indicates that lack of support from the family, poor English language ability, and the length of residence in the United States are all related to acculturative stress and poor self-management behavior. For HIV-positive Asian Americans, managing the disease can be a major concern—particularly in cultures that offer HIV-positive individuals few resources to understand and cope with the disease. Self-management is a process used to identify illness needs and activate resources for living with a disease like HIV. HIV-positive individuals who self-manage are expected to recognize HIV-related symptoms, decide when to alert their medical providers, and evaluate the results from treatment strategies. Not surprisingly, there is a paucity of data about self-management, including ART adherence, stress, and stigma among Asian Americans in the U.S. To this end, in this pilot project, we aim to improve the understanding of self-management barriers and facilitators among HIV-positive Asian Americans. This includes better understanding how they manage their physical and psychological discomforts, ART adherence, and quality of life, and how clinicians assess the need and readiness for self- and family-management intervention. In-depth interviews with 20-30 HIV-positive Asian Americans who have been diagnosed within last 5 years and 20-30 of their family caregivers will be conducted over two time points. Specific Aims are 1. To deepen understanding of the sociocultural and family context and characterize facilitators and barriers to self-management of Asian Americans living with HIV. 2. To assess the need, acceptability and readiness for an HIV self- and family management-based intervention. The preliminary data obtained from this project will be used to inform the development and testing of a self- and family management intervention to improve health outcomes in this population.