Participation of workers in the HIV and AIDS workplace programmes public sector: A case of Chipata and Sesheke Districts
Chilekwa, Kedric Chilekwa
MetadataShow full item record
According to the 2003 Zambia Central Board of Health (CBoH) report, the total number of people affected by HIV and AIDS within the working population is large and growing, the report further approximates that 1.6 million adult Zambians are currently living with HIV (UNAIDS: 2006). The report further estimates that 21% of the labour force between the ages of 15 to 55, who are in their most productive years, are infected with the HIV and AIDS. In 2002, as part of the national multi – sectoral response for the prevention and combating of the spread of HIV and AIDS in the workplace, the Zambia Business Coalition on HIV and AIDS, in corroboration with the National AIDS Council and the United Nations System in Zambia, established HIV and AIDS workplace programmes whose objectives include; HIV awareness in the workplace, education, prevention, care and support. Thus HIV and AIDS workplace programs aim to keep HIV negative employees negative and keep HIV positive employees healthy and productive. The study aimed at investigating workers participation in the HIV and AIDS workplace programmes in the public sector in Chipata and Sesheke districts. A descriptive non- experimental cross sectional design was adopted to undertake the survey. A total of 300 workers in the public sector were randomly selected. Findings from this study indicate that inspite of the widespread awareness of the existence of workplace HIV programmes and their usefulness, very few respondents participated in the programmes and very few were familiar with their objectives. Majority (63.3%) of the workers had never participated in the HIV workplace programmes and just slightly over half, 53% know the objectives of the HIV workplace programs. In order to increase worker participation and involvement in the designing and implementation of the HIV workplace programmes, there is need to increase dialogue by all stakeholders, management and employees alike in the planning, designing and implementation of the programmes, as well as increasing the frequency of HIV workplace meetings.