Posted: March 22nd, 2023

Health Disparities among Sex Workers (SWOP)

Health disparities among different groups still exist amidst aggressive universal health coverage campaigns. Institutional barriers within healthcare facilities remain the main cause of this disparity. Sex workers may be disrespected or experience long waiting periods in healthcare facilities. Hence, they may postpone or forego the services altogether, which can adversely affect their health. In addition, insufficient training of healthcare workers is a risk factor to this problem (Socias et al. 6). Hence, improved medical training on health policies focusing on anti-discrimination should be integrated into the entire continuum of care.

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Structural barriers may create health disparity among sex workers. For instance, sex work criminalization initiatives underminesafety of sex workers and lead to marginalization and stigma (Goldenberg et al. 77). Hence, policy reforms should be initiated to guarantee that sex workers could access the same health care services as other populations

Laws also lead to health disparities among sex workers. Exploitive laws increase the risk of HIV and STIs infections, physical and sexual violence among sex workers. Some legal practices isolate sex workers, while negatively affecting positive efforts, such as client negotiation, screening, carrying of condoms, and working in groups, which are expected to reduce the risk of infections. Some actions, such as confiscation of needles, syringes, and condoms may lead to increased risks in HIV and STIs. More so, such practices may violate human rights (Platt et al. 6). Hence, law reforms should be initiated and enacted to protect this population by reducing stigma, structural inequalities, and exclusion.

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