August 29, 2011
The largest and most comprehensive survey ever conducted in Cambodia finds 51 percent of households in which a member has HIV/AIDS do not have enough food to eat, compared to 35 percent of non-affected households.
A total of 4,172 households took part in the survey, including 2,623 HIV-affected and 1,549 non-affected households. An estimated 75,000 Cambodians in 60,000 households are living with HIV/AIDS.
According to the survey, 27 percent of respondents with HIV reported having lost their jobs or other source of income following diagnosis. Sixty-five percent of affected households had a least one loan. More than 25 percent of household members with HIV had caregivers.
Twenty-three percent of women with HIV/AIDS reported verbal abuse as a result of their status vs. 16 percent of affected men. Seven percent of HIV-positive women said they had experienced physical threats or abuse due to their infection, compared to 4 percent of men.
Sixty-five percent of people with HIV had low self-esteem: 49 percent were ashamed of their status; 47 percent felt they should be punished; and 16 percent reported suicidal thoughts.
The "Socioeconomic Impact of HIV at the Household Level in Cambodia" survey was produced by the UN and the National AIDS Authority. "The report will be an important base for us to find ways to improve the livelihoods for the HIV-affected households," said Tia Phalla, NAA's vice chair.