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Exploring the Experiences of Young Adults with Perinatally Acquired HIV

A new study examined young adults with perinatally acquired HIV living in South Florida in order to shed light on their lived experiences.

As of 2016, there were 11,915 individuals in the United States living with perinatally acquired HIV. The needs of this population are underexamined, but a recent study presented in a poster session at the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care Conference (ANAC 2019) sought to explore the experiences of young adults with perinatally acquired HIV residing in South Florida.

Abstract authors explained that the purpose of their qualitative study was to better understand what the emerging adults’ lived experiences are pertaining to perinatally acquired HIV. What benchmarks of the developmental stage are emerging adults with perinatally acquired HIV meeting?

The purposive sample consisted of 15 young adults from South Florida, aged 18 to 25 years, with perinatally acquired HIV. Data was collected from January to June 2018. Demographic data, individual depictions, composite depiction explication of themes, aesthetic renditions, and exemplary portraits were incorporated into data analysis.

Investigators found that emerging adults with perinatally acquired HIV encounter physiological, social, and psychological challenges. Better comprehension of these challenges by health systems can help facilitate their integration into mainstream society. Themes were classified under the categories panorama of living with HIV, consciousness, kinship, concealing, and paradox. Abstract authors also categorized participant responses according to realities of living with HIV and affirming milestones.

Abstract authors concluded that the results of their study provide “directions for improving nurses’ HIV care knowledge; and inform evidence-based healthcare and social services for this population, through nursing education, practice, research health and public policy.”

The abstract, The Lived Experience of Young Adults with Perinatally Acquired Human Immunodeficiency Virus Living in South Florida, was presented in a poster session at ANAC 2019 in Portland, Oregon.