HIV Prevalence and Awareness of Positive Serostatus Among Men Who Have Sex With Men and Transgender Women in Bogot, Colombia.

Zea MC, Reisen CA, Del Río-González AM, Bianchi FT, Ramirez-Valles J, Poppen PJ.
Original Article:


Objectives. We estimated HIV prevalence among men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women in Bogotá, Colombia, and explored differences between HIV-positive individuals who are aware and unaware of their serostatus. Methods. In this cross-sectional 2011 study, we used respondent-driven sampling (RDS) to recruit 1000 MSM and transgender women, who completed a computerized questionnaire and received an HIV test. Results. The RDS-adjusted prevalence was 12.1% (95% confidence interval [CI] = 8.7, 15.8), comparable to a previous RDS-derived estimate. Among HIV-positive participants, 39.7% (95% CI = 25.0, 54.8) were aware of their serostatus and 60.3% (95% CI = 45.2, 75.5) were unaware before this study. HIV-positive-unaware individuals were more likely to report inadequate insurance coverage, exchange sex (i.e., sexual intercourse in exchange for money, goods, or services), and substance use than other participants. HIV-positive-aware participants were least likely to have had condomless anal intercourse in the previous 3 months. Regardless of awareness, HIV-positive participants reported more violence and forced relocation experiences than HIV-negative participants. Conclusions. There is an urgent need to increase HIV detection among MSM and transgender women in Bogotá. HIV-positive-unaware group characteristics suggest an important role for structural, social, and individual interventions. (Am J Public Health. Published online ahead of print January 20, 2015: e1-e8. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2014.302307).

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