Background Systematic data on mental health issues among orphaned children are

Background Systematic data on mental health issues among orphaned children are not readily available in India. for children orphaned by AIDS (34.6) than the other group (20.6; p?Keywords: HIV, AIDS, Orphaned children, Mental health, Depression, India Introduction Globally, policy makers are struggling to find care solutions for an estimated 153 million children who have had at least one parent die [1]. High mortality among GDC-0973 young adults from conditions such as HIV/AIDS, malaria, tuberculosis, pregnancy complications, and natural disasters are responsible for the large and increasing number of orphans globally with the south and east Asia region estimated to have the largest number of orphans worldwide [2,3]. The orphaned children are impacted by their parental illness followed by their loss, as it limits their access to basic social services and undermines their chances of survival and future [4,5]. It is estimated that more than 20 million were orphaned by AIDS worldwide by 2010 [6]. HIV/AIDS is recognized as a source of mental health issues for young people, orphans and for those caring for orphans [7-9]. Though some recent attempts have been made to address the issues of children affected by AIDS, several issues still remain inadequately addressed especially the mental health of children orphaned by HIV/AIDS (COA) [10-17]. Higher rates of depression and anxiety, stigma and less optimism about future have been reported among COA as compared with non-orphans, and majority of these data are available from Sub-Saharan Africa [10,13,14,18-20]. Reliable estimates of the number of COA is not readily available for India [21,22]. UNICEF estimates that there GDC-0973 could be 4 million COA in India but given the high numbers of HIV infected people in India and the lag time between HIV infection and death from AIDS, it is estimated that the number of COA is on the rise [23-26]. India is signatory to the political declaration on HIV/AIDS wherein the government is committed to addressing the issues of COA [27]. Recognizing the need to support the growing orphan population, many non-governmental and faith-based organizations have founded orphanages to care for these children [22]. Data on mental health of these children are not readily available. In this context, we conducted a comparative study of mental health issues among COA and those orphaned due to other GDC-0973 disease/condition in urban India in order to contribute to an increased understanding of the mental health of children who have lost their parents, particularly COA. Methods Data for this study were collected from January to March 2012 in 14 orphanages in and around Hyderabad city in southern India. Ethics approval for this study was provided by the Human Ethics committee of the Public Health Foundation of India, New Delhi. Provision was Mouse monoclonal to Myostatin made for referral to a psychologist in the event of distress resulting from interview for children who participated in this study. Sample size and selection of participants Children orphaned due to HIV/AIDS (COA) and those orphaned because of reasons other than HIV/AIDS (COO) aged 12 to 16?years were sampled for this study. GDC-0973 An orphan child was defined as a child who had lost one or both parents, and therefore included maternal, paternal and double orphans [28,29]. A scoping exercise was undertaken during November 2011 in and around Hyderabad to identify functional orphanages from where recruitment of children could be done, and to obtain characteristics of orphans housed in these orphanages to assist with sampling (number of orphaned children by age and sex, type of orphan (AIDS or non-AIDS), average duration of stay, predominant language spoken and appropriate time to contact). Based on this scoping exercise, 14 orphanages which had at.

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