Home Discrimination Sterilization Of Young Women Living With HIV without Consent!

Sterilization Of Young Women Living With HIV without Consent!

by Maurine Tukahirwa

It’s true, a pregnant woman living with HIV can pass on the Virus to her baby during pregnancy, childbirth, and through breastfeeding. If you are a woman living with HIV, taking antiretroviral treatment correctly during pregnancy and breastfeeding can virtually eliminate the risk of passing on the virus to your baby. That also translates to; you have the right to give birth to the number of children you prefer. As though that’s not enough to eliminate HIV by 2030, some Self intended health practitioners have resolved to forcefully Sterilize Young Women through disguise in C-Section and Immunization as only then will the new born baby be at no risk of acquiring the Virus. The act of sterilization is irreversible! Only 3 registered cases so far in Sub-Saharan Africa and many more unregistered cases due to the increased HIV Stigma and Discrimination among Communities and our Health System. This doesn’t take away the fact that Young Women’s rights are being violated. It becomes worse when a young girl finds out that such a decision is made by a mother-in-law without any ounce of Consent from the Victim herself. Such medical practices become quite impossible to realize until you want another baby and the only thing the MD will tell you is, “You are unable to conceive because your tubes were cut.”

Young Women living with HIV need to take extra precautions when seeking for antenatal and Post-natal care. We need to hold our systems accountable for the denial of Young African Women in making their own choices. The information gap on HIV is still huge. It has led to the rise of cases of Violence against women in Africa. Disclosure still remains a big challenge among Young People. Turns out, society is still not ready to make peace and live harmoniously with Young People living with HIV. Question is “How do we achieve Peace and Equality when such huge obstacles are still in the way?”

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