Reproductive decision-making among HIV-positive couples in Taiwan

Nai Ying Ko, Marjorie Muecke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: To explore the gender-based power relationships and social and cultural influences on reproductive decision-making processes among HIV-positive couples in Taiwan. Methods: The study sample consisted of 14 HIV-positive couples in southern Taiwan. Data were analyzed using feminist ethnography to explore reproductive decisions made by these couples within the context of Taiwanese society. Findings: Self-knowledge of HIV status had a limited influence on decisions about child-bearing. More important was the Confucian values of filial piety and familial obligation, a powerful norm that still dictates procreation decisions in Taiwan. The process by which the couples made reproductive decisions consisted of four stages: initial reproductive decisions between partners, their search for information, their encounters with medical systems, and their weighing risks and benefits. Male and female partners expressed different concerns, and gender-based power relationships were exercised during the decision-making process. Conclusions: HIV status was not the sole determinant of reproductive decisions made by HIV-positive couples. Rather, the Confucian value of filial piety drove the couples' reproductive decisions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)41-47
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nursing Scholarship
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Mar

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Nursing(all)


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