USF St. Petersburg campus Honors Program Theses (Undergraduate)


Megan Trout

First Advisor

Thesis Director: Kyaien O. Conner, Ph.D. Assistant Professor, Department of Mental Health Law and Policy


University of South Florida at St. Petersburg



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The Deaf community is at a much higher risk of contracting HIV/AIDS compared to the rest of the population; however, there is a distinct lack of research done on this group. The lack of representation of the Deaf community in medicine and disease research has led to this epidemic. The Deaf community also differs in that their understanding of HIV/AIDS and its transmission, symptoms, prevention, and treatments is significantly lower than that of the rest of the population. One reason for this gap in knowledge is the lack of access to informational materials. Deaf individuals cannot always rely on the types of mediums such as television or radio that are typically used to distribute information to the majority. This study reviews fifteen scientific articles regarding the knowledge and perceptions of deaf individuals towards HIV/AIDS. It was found that deaf individuals often feel that they do not have the appropriate access to medical care and that communication between themselves and healthcare workers is difficult. Additional research needs to be done directly with participation from individuals in the Deaf community to discover the most appropriate ways to administer HIV/AIDS information to this community.


A thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the University Honors Program University of South Florida, St. Petersburg

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