Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://cris.unibe.edu.do/handle/123456789/250
Title: Examining the policy climate for HIV prevention in the Caribbean tourism sector: a qualitative study of policy makers in the Dominican Republic
Autores: Padilla, M. B.
Matiz Reyes, A.
Connolly, M.
Natsui, S.
Puello, A.
Chapman, Helena
Researchers (UNIBE): Chapman, Helena 
Affiliations: Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud 
Research area: Ciencias de la Salud; Ciencias Sociales
Keywords: Caribbean; Dominican Republic; Tourism; HIV/AIDS; Public–private partnership
Issue Date: 2012
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Source: Health Policy and Planning, 27 (3), 245–255
Journal: Health Policy and Planning 
Volume: 27
Issue: 3
Start page: 245
End page: 255
Abstract: 
Background The Caribbean has the highest prevalence rates of HIV/AIDS outside sub-Saharan Africa, and a broad literature suggests an ecological association between tourism areas and sexual vulnerability. Tourism employees have been shown to engage in high rates of sexual risk behaviours. Nevertheless, no large-scale or sustained HIV prevention interventions have been conducted within the tourism industry. Policy barriers and resources are under-studied.

Methods In order to identify the policy barriers and resources for HIV prevention in the tourism sector, our research used a participatory approach involving a multisectoral coalition of representatives from the tourism industry, government, public health and civil society in the Dominican Republic. We conducted 39 in-depth semi-structured interviews with policy makers throughout the country focusing on: prior experiences with HIV prevention policies and programmes in the tourism sector; barriers and resources for such policies and programmes; and future priorities and recommendations.

Results Findings suggest perceptions among policy makers of barriers related to the mobile nature of tourism employees; the lack of centralized funding; fear of the ‘image problem’ associated with HIV; and the lack of multisectoral policy dialogue and collaboration. Nevertheless, prior short-term experiences and changing attitudes among some private sector tourism representatives suggest emerging opportunities for policy change.

Conclusion We argue that the time is ripe for dialogue across the public–private divide in order to develop regulatory mechanisms, joint responsibilities and centralized funding sources to ensure a sustainable response to the HIV-tourism linkage. Policy priorities should focus on incorporating HIV prevention as a component of occupational health; reinforcing workers’ health care rights as guaranteed by existing law; using private sector tourism representatives who support HIV prevention as positive role models for national campaigns; and disseminating a notion of ‘investment’ in safer tourism environments as a means to positively influence tourist demand.
URI: http://cris.unibe.edu.do/handle/123456789/250
DOI: 10.1093/heapol/czr021
Appears in Collections:Publicaciones de la Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud

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