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Correlates of HIV testing among women in Ghana: some evidence from the Demographic and Health Surveys
Authors: Eric Y. Tenkorang; Gertrude A. Owusu
Source: AIDS Care, Volume 22, Issue 3, 2010, Pages 296 - 307, DOI: 10.1080/09540120903193716
Topic(s): HIV testing
Country: Africa
Published: 2010
Abstract: Abstract Ghana's strategic framework for controlling HIV/AIDS endorses voluntary HIV testing as an important strategy toward risk reduction and HIV/AIDS prevention. Yet, like other sub-Saharan African countries, utilization of testing services in Ghana is very low. Using the 2003 Ghana Demographic and Health Surveys and applying both complementary and negative log-log models, this study investigates the correlates of HIV testing among women aged 15-49. Two major dependent variables are considered, “ever tested for AIDS” and “wanting to test for AIDS.” Results show that majority of Ghanaian women have not tested for HIV but say they want to do so. Having tested for HIV is strongly related to respondents' knowledge about someone dead of AIDS and other socio-economic and demographic variables such as education, region of residence, rural-urban residence, religion, and marital status. Majority of Ghanaian women do not know where to get an HIV test, although knowing where to get a test was significantly related to wanting to get the test done. To increase voluntary testing for HIV among women in Ghana it is recommended that testing services be made more accessible and visible especially to those residing in rural areas who may be economically disadvantaged. Interventions, including routine checking of HIV serostatus among patients seeking healthcare in clinics and home/work-based testing programs, must be encouraged as ways of expanding access among women in Ghana.