There are anecdotal evidences suggesting that the rollout of ART in Ethiopia facing challenges from social and religious directions. This work has been conceived with the objective of identifying the social and religious challenges of ART program at the selected two PLWHA associations. The study suggested that there are different knowledge and attitudes towards HIV/AIDS and ART that affect the uptake of ART. We can categorize the participants’ attitude towards using ART in to three. The first group strongly disagrees with the idea of using ART considering it as a weapon of Satan. For them, HIV/AIDS can be cured and has to be treated only by holy water. The second group regards ART as a supporter of the holy water. So, they believe in taking ARV with the holy water concomitantly. The other attitude supported with few informants was using only ART to treat HIV/AIDS. In addition to religion related factors, social factors are also noted to play significant role in affecting the ARV uptake. In conclusion, the issue is waiting for large scale study in order to measure the magnitude of the problem and for implementation of possible measures at a wide range to abate the problems.
Ermias Bezabih Weldeyohannes, MSW: Studied Social Work at Addis Ababa University. Working for Ethiopian Orthodox Church, Mahibere Kidusan’s HIV/AIDS prevention and control project to enhance the concurrent use of Anti Retro Viral Treatment and Holly Water. Email: email@example.com