Clients with HIV infection have been conceptualized as a vulnerable population. Although some researchers have examined vulnerability with clients with HIV infection, a theory of vulnerability in the context of HIV infection is non-existent. The purpose of this study was to describe, using qualitative methodology, the process by which vulnerability occurs in the context of HIV infection. Grounded theory methodology was used to sample and analyze data from 15 qualitative interviews of adults with HIV infection. Data were collected until data saturation was reached. A theory that describes the process by which vulnerability occurs in the context of HIV infection, Living in Silence, emerged from the data. Living in Silence consists of four categories: Confronting Mortality and Illness, Struggling with Change, Encountering a Lack of Psychosocial Support, and Experiencing Vulnerability. Clients living with HIV experience vulnerability. Nursing interventions to decrease the risks of vulnerability should be directed toward the holistic needs of clients and toward increasing psychosocial support.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Phychiatric Mental Health