Exploring the factors influencing access to and utilization of sexual health services by South Asian men in Ontario
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Introduction: South Asian communities comprise one of the fastest-growing populations in Canada. However, the sexual health of South Asian immigrant men, in particular, remains vastly understudied in high-income economy countries, and little is known about how and if men access these services. Objectives: This study aimed to explore contextual factors (e.g. cultural, psychological, social) influencing the accessibility (actual and/or perceived) and utilization of sexual health services by South Asian men in Canada. Methods: An interpretive description (ID) research methodology was used to concurrently collect and analyze data in Ontario. The overall analysis followed Braun and Clarke's guidelines for thematic analysis. Eighteen semi-structured interviews were conducted between May – July 2021 with South Asian-born immigrant men between the age range of 20-45 years Results: We found sexual health is perceived negatively by some South Asian men and limited sexual health information was said to exist within the community. Furthermore, the perceived severity of sexual illness also influenced sexual health service access. Participants also mentioned sexual health as taboo, the social nature of sex positivity and sex-negativity and that men share sexual health information with only trusted sources (e.g. friends and family). Our participants also mentioned that sexual health information was shared more openly by following a lifestyle that normalizes sexual health discussions rather than South Asian cultural norms. Findings further suggest South Asian mens’ culture influences their perceptions of sexual health and overall access to care which they often think to be an optional service. For example, gender stereotypes about men within the South Asian cultures can influence sexual health-seeking behaviours among men. Conclusion: This study provides insight into the contextual factors shaping the access and utilization by these men – these data may be used to inform efforts to increase service utilization.
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Yamin Tauseef Jahangir (2022). Exploring the factors influencing access to and utilization of sexual health services by South Asian men in Ontario. UWSpace. http://hdl.handle.net/10012/17919