Individual-level predictors for HIV testing among antenatal attendees in Lusaka, Zambia


Authors

Thierman S, Chi BH, Levy JW, Sinkala M, Goldenberg RL, Stringer JSA


Journal


ABSTRACT:

Despite the availability of antiretroviral prophylaxis, roughly one-fifth of public-sector antenatal patients decline HIV testing in Lusaka, Zambia. We administered a survey to determine individual-level predictors of HIV testing. Of 1064 antenatal attendees approached after pretest counseling, 1060 (>99%) participated. Of these, 686 (65%) agreed to HIV testing. On bivariate analysis controlling for clinic of attendance, women younger than 20 years old (adjusted RR [ARR] = 1.14), unmarried (ARR = 1.14), pregnant for the first time (ARR = 1.14), with lower educational attainment (ARR = 1.15), and with lower income (ARR = 1.14) were all more likely to undergo testing. When HIV risk was considered, women with low self-perceived risk were most likely to undergo HIV testing. As risk perception increased, likelihood for testing decreased (P for trend < 0.001). Although not statistically predictive, we identified prevalent community beliefs that may act as barriers to testing. Because individual-level characteristics were only weakly predictive of HIV testing, future work should concentrate on community-level factors

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