Bashemera, Domitilla R., Martha J. Nhembo, and Grace Benedict. 2013. The Role of Women's Empowerment in Influencing HIV Testing. DHS Working Papers No. 101. Calverton, Maryland, USA: ICF International.
The study on the role of women’s empowerment and HIV testing in Tanzania was conducted using data from the 2010 Tanzania Demographic and Health Survey (TDHS).
Objective and Conceptual Framework: The study analyzed the influence of women’s empowerment on HIV testing. Specifically, indicators of women’s empowerment were linked to women’s socioeconomic characteristics and to HIV testing. Women’s characteristics include age, education, wealth, employment, residence and whether the woman had given birth in the five
years preceding the survey. Women’s empowerment indicators include participation in household decision-making, attitudes disapproving wife beating and attitudes that women can refuse sex if their husbands have a sexually transmitted infection.
Methods: The study involved 6,406 women age 15-49 and currently married and living together with their husbands. Descriptive analysis was used to determine the women’s socioeconomic characteristics. Bivariate and multivariate (logistic regression) analyses were used to determine the association between socioeconomic characteristics and women’s empowerment in influencing HIV testing.
Results: Out of the 6,406 women, 4,246 had been tested for HIV. The odds of being tested were higher among women who participated in household decision-making, had disapproving attitudes toward wife beating, and approving attitudes toward refusal of sex. Both for women without a recent birth and for women who gave birth in the past five years and who used ANC services, empowerment is associated with higher likelihood of HIV testing.