Barriers Affecting Students with Special Needs in Accessing Comprehensive Sexual and Reproductive Health Services and Rights on Campus a Case of Kwame Nkrumah University

Authors : Misheck Samakao

Volume/Issue : Volume 7 - 2022, Issue 12 - December

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- Students with special needs face a lot obstacles during their studies on campus. In many institutions of higher learning there is often little attention given in the provision of the services with respect to students living with disabilities. Students with special needs are 3-4 times at higher risks of contracting HIV/AIDS as compared to the ordinary students. The institutions of higher learning mostly do not take this reality into consideration in terms of planning and repackaging of services in order to meet this challenge. Students with special needs suffer gross violation of human rights during their period of study in institutions of higher education leading to high levels of stigma, high exposure to HIV/AIDS risks, high unhygienic conditions and poor sanitary services, lack of attention and even denial of access to health, sexual and reproductive health services on campus both directly and indirectly. The study used qualitative research methodology. Both probabilistic and non-probability techniques were used as sampling techniques. The findings of the study showed that students living with disabilities had difficulties in accessing comprehensive sexual and reproductive health(CSRH) services. They reported long distances to the facility, stigma, negative attitudes from medical staff including communication barriers and myths. It was recommended that comprehensive sexual and reproductive health services need to be repackaged effectively in order to meet the demand from students living with disabilities on campus. There was also need to create more robust awareness and sensitization programs to specifically address challenges faced by students with special needs. The study contributed to the body of empirical knowledge relevant to policy makers, academicians and planners in the fight of HIV/AIDS pandemic.

Keywords : Comprehensive Reproductive Health, Disability, Students with Special Needs, Accessibility, Availability, HIV/AIDS, Vulnerability, Barriers.


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31 - March - 2023

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