The HIV/AIDS pandemic in Kenya: an investigation into the perceptions of Kenyans toward people living with HIV/AIDS and government programmes

  • Robert Nyaga


The HIV/AIDS pandemic is compounded by the continued stigmatization of the virus/disease and of people living
with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA). Employing structuration theory, this study sought to examine the perceptions of Kenyans
toward their government’s efforts to curtail HIV/AIDS as well as their attitudes toward PLWHA. Data for this study
were collected using an open-ended online survey. In total, 103 participants (25.3%) completed the survey. We used
snowball sampling to select prospective participants known to the researcher; they were sent a link to the survey
via email or direct message on a social networking site like Facebook or WhatsApp, and were asked to share the
survey with people in their social circles. Data were analysed using thematic analysis. Findings revealed that some
participants had confidence in the Kenyan government’s efforts to address the HIV/AIDS pandemic, while others
showed no confidence in government-led initiatives. Consistent with previous research, this study found that stigma
towards HIV/ AIDS and PLWHA still exists. Practical and theoretical implications of the findings are discussed.
Keywords: attitudes, PLWHA, stigma, structuration


Journal Identifiers

eISSN: 1608-5906
print ISSN: 1727-9445