Poverty and Food Insecurity Survival Mechanisms for Older Persons with and without HIV/AIDS in a Rural Setting South Western Uganda.

Joseph Mugisha, University of Missouri
Kaleea Lewis, University of Missouri-Columbia
Janet Seeley, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
Joel Negin, University of Sydney
Enid Schatz, University of Missouri, Columbia

We explored poverty and food insecurity among older persons living with HIV/AIDS (OPLHA) in a rural setting in central Uganda using individual interviews with individuals aged 60 and over. Our conceptual framework provides a lens for how food insecurity and HIV are connected through a complex interplay between bidirectional pathways including nutritional, mental health, and behavioural factors at the community, household and individual levels. Participants’ narratives revealed that key factors in food security, and thus survival, among OPLHA include familial and social networks, informal labor as a means of income generation, and subsistence farming providing goods to exchange. The findings provide insight into the interconnectedness of older persons’ food security with the available their health and access to help, and their livelihoods. We conclude that interventions are required to address the gaps in access to food, particularly among older persons in ill or ailing health.

See paper.

  Presented in Session 106. Population Dynamics, Environmental Change and Food Security in Africa