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Trends in HIV-related behaviors and knowledge in Uganda, 1989-2005: evidence of a shift toward more risk-taking behaviors
Authors: Opio A, Mishra V, Hong R, Musinguzi J, Kirungi W, Cross A, Mermin J, Bunnell R.
Source: Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, 49(3):320-6. doi: 10.1097/QAI.0b013e3181893eb0
Topic(s): HIV/AIDS
Country: Africa
Published: NOV 2008
Abstract: OBJECTIVE(S): To describe recent trends in HIV-related behaviors and knowledge in Uganda between 1989 and 2005. DESIGN: Population-based, cross-sectional national surveys of adult women and men. METHODS: Trend analysis of selected HIV-related behavior and knowledge indicators, using data from the 2004-2005 Uganda HIV/AIDS Sero-Behavioral Survey and the 2000-2001, 1995, and 1988-1989 Uganda Demographic and Health Surveys. Responses to similar questions across the different surveys were compared to determine trends in indicators. RESULTS: HIV/AIDS knowledge increased to a high level by 2001 and remained stable thereafter. Some self-reported risk behaviors improved, whereas others deteriorated. Among 15- to 24-year-old women and men, primary abstinence increased, from 23% in 1989 to 32% in 2005 and from 32% in 1995 to 42% in 2005, respectively. In men, there were increases in sex with multiple partners and sex with nonspousal partners, although reported condom use during nonspousal sex declined. Of men aged 15-49 years, self-reported multiple sex partnership increased from 24% in 2001 to 29% in 2005 and nonspousal sex increased from 28% in 2001 to 37% in 2005. Between 2001 and 2005, condom use during last nonspousal sex declined from 65% to 55% in men aged 15-24 years. CONCLUSIONS: Although substantial improvements in HIV-related risk behaviors and knowledge occurred since 1989, recent increases in some HIV-related risk behaviors were observed, indicating a shift toward more risk-taking behaviors. Prevention efforts should be reinvigorated to address this, otherwise the past success in the HIV fight will be reversed. Monitoring of HIV-related indicators should be continued.