A study of adjustment by PLHIV in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and of requirements for psychosocial support

Bojana Delibaši´c Bjeli´c
Social Worker, University of Banja Luka, Philosophy Faculty – Department of Social Work, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) is a small country (population: around 4 million) with low rates of HIV. Although an epidemic is not currently in prospect, various problematic social factors could combine to bring a marked rise in prevalence:
Socioeconomic challenges
Prevalence of human trafficking
High unemployment
High rates of prostitution
Lack of HIV/AIDS education
Immigration from high-prevalence areas
Rising drug addiction
Stigma/discrimination around HIV
Limited testing and care for STIs
Poor access to high-risk groups
Low uptake of HIV testing
Between 1986 (when BiH registered its first HIV case) and the end of 2012, 221 people were registered as HIV positive, of whom 120 subsequently developed AIDS. Most are men (80.5%), with the main transmission route by heterosexual sex (52.1%), followed by homosexual-bisexual (28.5%). Most HIV patients are from the age groups 20–29 (33.8%) and 40–49 (26.3%). Read more…