Indian J Sex Transm Dis Indian J Sex Transm Dis
Official Publication of the Indian Association for the Study of Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Indian J Sex Transm Dis
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Year : 2020  |  Volume : 41  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 58-62

Rapid Assessment of low utilisation of sexually transmitted infection services amongst high risk groups in designated sexually transmitted infection clinics of Bhopal” – A Qualitative Study

1 Department of Community Medicine, Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, Government Medical College, Rajnandgaon, Chhattisgarh, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Manju Toppo
Department of Community Medicine, Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/ijstd.IJSTD_109_16

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Introduction: High-risk groups (HRGs) have limited access to appropriate information and sexual and reproductive health services. They are a highly marginalized subgroup and their social stigma is a barrier for the use of health care and treatment. Objectives: (1) To assess the knowledge regarding sexually transmitted infection (STI) infections among HRGs. (2) To identify the reasons and barriers associated with low utilization of services among HRGs. Materials and Methods: Qualitative study conducted in three HRGs of Bhopal for 3 months. Six focus group discussions were done among three HRGs namely intravenous drug users (IDUs), commercial sex workers (CSWs), and men having sex with men (MSM). Issues related to STIs were asked to all the respondents and detailed responses were recorded by the voice recorders and noted down. The audio recordings were translated and transcribed into English. Transcribed data content were analyzed manually in various themes. Results: Knowledge regarding STI/reproductive tract infection: The knowledge of HRGs regarding STDs was assessed. Almost all the CSWs of the group were having considerable knowledge regarding signs and symptoms about STI. MSM were having good knowledge about STIs. Most of the IDUs had a very limited and scarce knowledge about STI. Most of the CSWs shared their problems regarding STI with family members followed by doctor. Almost all the MSMs approached the counselor first before approaching a doctor and preferred to consult a doctor in a government hospital. Majority of IDUs said that they prefer to go to government hospital for getting treated for such conditions while a few prefer for private hospitals. Conclusion: Majority of HRGs are seeking health care from government health facilities while the MSMs and transgender faced discrimination at these facilities and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) played a major role in promoting better health-seeking behavior among them. The HRGs freely discussed their problems with the NGOs.

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