The burden and determinants of HIV and sexually transmitted infections in a population based sample of female sex workers in Goa, India

Shahmanesh, M., Cowan, F., Wayal, Sonali, Copas, A., Patel, V. and Mabey, D. (2009) The burden and determinants of HIV and sexually transmitted infections in a population based sample of female sex workers in Goa, India. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 85 (1). ISSN 1368-4973

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Abstract

Background: Interventions targeting sex-workers are central to the National AIDS Control program of India’s third five-year plan. Understanding the way in which societal and individual factors interact to shape sex-workers’ vulnerability would better inform interventions. Methods: 326 female sex workers, recruited throughout Goa using respondent-driven-sampling, completed interviewer-administered questionnaires. Biological samples were tested for Trichomonas vaginalis, Neisseria gonorrhoea, Chlamydia trachomatis, and antibodies to Herpes simplex type 2, and HIV. Multivariate analysis was used to define the determinanats of HIV infection and any bacterial sexually transmitted infection (STI). Results: Infections were common with 25.7% prevalence of HIV and 22.5% prevalence of bacterial STIs; Chlamydia 7.3%, gonorrhoea 8.9% and trichomonas 9.4%. Antibodies to Herpes simplex type 2 were detected in 57.2% of the women. STIs were independently associated with factors reflecting gender disadvantage and disempowerment namely, young age, lack of schooling, no financial autonomy, deliberate-self-harm, sexual-abuse, and , sex work related factors, such as having regular customers, and working on the streets. Other factors associated with STIs were Goan ethnicity, not having an intimate partner, and being asymptomatic. Having knowledge about HIV and access to free STI services was associated with a lower likelihood of STIs. HIV was independently associated with being Hindu, recent migration to Goa, lodge or brothel based sex work, genital-ulcer-disease, and dysuria Conclusion: Sex-workers working in medium prevalence states of India are highly vulnerable to HIV and STIs, and need to be rapidly incorporated into existing interventions. Structural and gender based determinants of HIV and STIs are integral to HIV prevention strategies.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Prostitution, female, HIV infectin, sexually transmitted infections, epidemiology, India
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Primary Care and Public Health
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine > RA0639 Transmission of disease
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0109 Infectious and parasitic diseases
Depositing User: Pending Items
Date Deposited: 11 Sep 2008
Last Modified: 11 Mar 2017 02:51
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/2019
Google Scholar:20 Citations

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