Background: Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) prevalence rates in refugee camps are
inconclusive in current literature, with some studies highlighting the increased risk of transmission due
to poor living conditions and lower levels of education. With the increasing number of refugees from
HIV endemic countries, it is important to assess the programs established to support patients upon arrival.
Refugees have been reported to have a lower health literacy and face disease-related stigmatization,
which must be overcome for the lifelong treatment of HIV.
Case Presentation: 31-year-old female arrived in Canada as a refugee from Sudan with her 5 children
in July of 2017. She was diagnosed with HIV and severe dental carries during her initial medical
evaluation and referred to our centre. A lack of social support has resulted in severe psychological
stress. The first being stigmatization which has led to her not disclosing the diagnosis to anyone outside
her medical care team. Her level of knowledge about HIV is consistent with literature reporting
that despite HIV prevention programs in refugee camps, compliance with risk reduction behaviors, especially
in females, is low. Lastly, her major concern relates to the cost of living and supporting her
Conclusion: Assessment of current HIV programs is necessary to recognize and resolve gaps in the
system. Focusing on programs which increase both risk reduction behaviors in refugee camps and integration
of refugees in a new healthcare system can facilitate an easier transition for patients and aid
in the quest for global 90-90-90 targets for HIV.