Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations
Membership in HIV/AIDS ‘Activist’ Organizations Beneficial to HIV-Positive Individuals, Study Says
Reuters Health reported on Wednesday that people with HIV/AIDS who belong to an "activist" organization seem to "cope better" than those with HIV/AIDS who do not belong to such an organization, according to a study published in the February issue of the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. Lead author Dale Brashers of the University of
Illinois-Urbana-Champaign and colleagues interviewed 174
HIV-positive individuals, 30 of whom reported belonging to an HIV/AIDS activist group -- defined as a "setting in which skills and resources are developed, shared and mobilized to create social and individual change." The researchers reported that those belonging to an activist group dealt with stress more effectively, were more knowledgeable about how to get information on HIV/AIDS treatment options and were connected to other
HIV-positive people by "stronger social networks," while those not belonging to such a group were more likely to use
"emotion-based coping strategies," such as "wishing" their problems would disappear. "Because of the stigma associated with the disease and the potential for devastating physical consequences and death, (participation in organized groups) may be needed to provide a safe environment for those [with HIV/AIDS] to develop relationships and adjust to the consequences of living with their illness," the researchers concluded (Reuters Health, 8/7).
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.