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Violence towards women, men's sexual risk factors and HIV infection among women: Findings from a national household survey in Rwanda.
Authors: Kayibanda JF, Bitera R, Alary M.
Source: Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes, 2012 Jan 5. [Epub ahead of print]
Topic(s): Domestic violence
Sexual behavior
Country: Africa
Published: JAN 2012
Abstract: Abstract OBJECTIVES: We used the third Rwanda demographic and health survey (DHS) data to examine the relationship between violence towards women, men sexual risk factors and HIV prevalence among women. METHODS: The Rwanda DHS was conducted in 10,272 households in 2005. Analyses were restricted to 2,715 women and 2,461 men who were legally married or cohabiting. We used logistic regression to analyse associations between HIV and violence towards women. Couple specific analyses were carried out for assessing the relationship between men sexual risk factors and intimate partner violence (IPV) reported by their wives. RESULTS: Respectively 29.2%, 22.2% and 12.4% of women reported having experienced physical, psychological and sexual IPV whereas 52.1% reported control practices by their partners. There was a positive link between IPV reported by women and attitudes justifying wife beating endorsed by their husband. After controlling for socio-demographic variables and women sexual risk factors, the odds of HIV prevalence was 3.23 [Confidence Interval (95% CI): 1.30-8.03] among women with a score from 3 to 4 on the psychological IPV scale compared to those with a score from 0 to 2. Women who reported having experienced inter-parental violence (father who beat mother) were more likely to test HIV-positive: adjusted odds ratio: 1.95; 95% CI: 1.11-3.43. There was also a statistically significant relationship between men risky sexual factors and experience of IPV as well as HIV prevalence among women. CONCLUSION: Violence towards women is associated with HIV in Rwanda. Intervention to reduce gender-based violence should be integrated into HIV/AIDS policy.