Willingness to distribute free rapid home HIV test kits and to test with social or sexual network associates among men who have sex with men in the United States

Akshay Sharma*, Pollyanna R. Chavez, Robin J. MacGowan, A. D. McNaghten, Brian Mustanski, Laura Gravens, Arin E. Freeman, Patrick S. Sullivan

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations

Abstract

Peer-driven HIV prevention strategies can be effective in identifying high-risk persons with undiagnosed infections. Besides individual self-testing, other potential uses of rapid home HIV test kits include distributing them, and testing with others within one's social or sexual networks. We sought to identify factors associated with the willingness to engage in these alternative activities among men who have sex with men (MSM) in the United States. From May to October 2014, we surveyed 828 HIV-negative or unknown status MSM about multiple aspects of rapid home HIV testing. A greater proportion indicated being likely to distribute free oral fluid (OF) tests compared to free finger-stick blood (FSB) tests (91% versus 79%), and almost three-fourths (72%) reported being likely to test with their friends or sex partners in the future. MSM not identifying as homosexual/gay were less willing to distribute OF tests, and those with lower educational attainment were more willing to distribute FSB tests. MSM unaware of their HIV status were less likely to report potentially testing with others using free rapid home HIV tests compared to those who were HIV-negative. Finally, MSM willing to self-test were more likely to report future test kit distribution, and those willing to distribute kits were more likely to report potentially testing with others. Engaging individuals with positive attitudes towards these strategies in prevention efforts could help increase HIV testing levels among MSM. A greater understanding of the potential public health impact of rapid home HIV test kits is necessary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1499-1503
Number of pages5
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Volume29
Issue number12
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2 2017

Keywords

  • HIV test kit distribution
  • HIV testing with partners
  • Rapid home HIV testing
  • comprehensive HIV prevention
  • internet-using MSM

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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