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Article

Disparities in Accessing Sexual and Reproductive Health Services at the Intersection of Disability and Female Adolescence in Tanzania

1
Department of Social Sciences and Philosophy, University of Jyväskylä, 40014 Jyväskylä, Finland
2
Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Helsinki, 00014 Helsinki, Finland
3
Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Dar es Salaam, 35091 Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Joanna Mazur
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(4), 1657; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041657
Received: 12 January 2021 / Revised: 28 January 2021 / Accepted: 3 February 2021 / Published: 9 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Disability and Healthcare Disparities)
Despite at times having greater needs for sexual and reproductive health (SRH) services, adolescents with disabilities often face challenges when trying to access them. This inaccessibility is further exacerbated during female adolescence. The qualitative study examines how SRH services respond to the characteristics of Tanzanian adolescent females with disabilities. We used the method of empathy-based stories to investigate the perceptions of 136 adolescent females with disabilities of their access to SRH services in Tanzania. The study used thematic content analysis and the Levesque model of health care access was applied as an analytical framework. The results demonstrate that discrimination affects access at different phases of care-seeking, that affectionate behaviour of providers is a central enabler of access, and that for this population access relies on a collective effort. We propose that affection, as an enabler of access, is as an additional provider dimension of access to SRH services for adolescents with disabilities, serving as a “reasonable accommodation” to the health care systems in southern contexts and beyond. View Full-Text
Keywords: sexual and reproductive health services; adolescence; disability; Tanzania; access to health care; inequality; SRHR sexual and reproductive health services; adolescence; disability; Tanzania; access to health care; inequality; SRHR
MDPI and ACS Style

Mesiäislehto, V.; Katsui, H.; Sambaiga, R. Disparities in Accessing Sexual and Reproductive Health Services at the Intersection of Disability and Female Adolescence in Tanzania. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18, 1657. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041657

AMA Style

Mesiäislehto V, Katsui H, Sambaiga R. Disparities in Accessing Sexual and Reproductive Health Services at the Intersection of Disability and Female Adolescence in Tanzania. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2021; 18(4):1657. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041657

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mesiäislehto, Virpi, Hisayo Katsui, and Richard Sambaiga. 2021. "Disparities in Accessing Sexual and Reproductive Health Services at the Intersection of Disability and Female Adolescence in Tanzania" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 18, no. 4: 1657. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph18041657

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