Impact of HIV/AIDS on African-born Women Living in the United States: A Systematic Review


BACKGROUND: There is paucity of surveillance data about African-born women (ABW) living with HIV/AIDS in the USA. Out of the 50 US states, only Washington state and Minnesota report HIV surveillance data about African-born people, and Minnesota is the only state that reports data about ABW, specifically. In Minnesota, ABW have the largest prevalence rate of HIV/AIDS among all women. In Washington state, foreign-born Black people have the highest incidence of HIV behind white people and foreign-born Hispanic people. This study aims to better understand the impact HIV/AIDS on ABW. METHODS: This systematic review is based on articles available on three databases (PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Library). Databases were searched for articles that included quantitative and/or qualitative findings about the impact of HIV/AIDS on ABW in the USA. RESULTS: Several themes were identified including disproportionate impact of HIV/AIDS on ABW, barriers to care, low sexual health knowledge, HIV-related stigma, and limited HIV testing. Based on 2013 data, the incidence of HIV among ABW was 12 times higher than the incidence among women in the general US population. In 2008–2014, ABW had the smallest decline in HIV diagnosis rate when compared to US-born men and women, African-born men, and Caribbean-born men and women. Barriers that ABW face when trying to access care include, language barriers, fear of deportation and difficulty navigating the US healthcare system. CONCLUSION: ABW living in the USA are uniquely impacted by HIV/AIDS. Lasting negative health consequences can be mitigated by improving HIV surveillance and investing in further studies about this population.


Elmileik E, Turnbull I




  • Epidemiology and Determinants of Health
    • Determinants of Health
  • Determinants of Health
    • Education
    • Health services
    • Stigma/discrimination
  • Population(s)
    • Women
    • Ethnoracial communities
    • General HIV+ population
  • Testing
    • Testing


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