Cost Is Barrier to Receive HIV Testing as Part of Premarital Counseling in China
May 24, 2005
Z.Y. Wu and colleagues at the University of California-Los Angeles conducted a survey that found cost is a barrier to receiving HIV testing as part of premarital counseling in China.
"Premarital counseling is required for couples wishing to be married in China," the researchers reported. "The counseling primarily provides information about contraception. We evaluated adding premarital HIV/AIDS counseling and voluntary HIV testing to the standard counseling."
The scientists offered the test free to one group and at standard cost to the other. "The proportion of those accepting testing among all participants receiving premarital counseling was used as a measure of acceptability," the investigators reported.
"Sixteen percent of participants not charged chose to accept testing versus 1.4 percent of those charged (pAccording to Wu, "Over 5 percent of participants admitted to premarital sex, most with their fiancé, and a significantly higher portion was female. Only 22 percent used condoms. Study participants were randomized for 1-year follow-up. Only four participants reported extramarital sexual activity during that year."
"Acceptance of HIV testing was disappointingly low. Implementing strategies to reduce stigmatization and increase knowledge of HIV/AIDS, in addition to not charging for testing, may increase the acceptance of HIV testing," the authors concluded.
The study, "Acceptability of HIV/AIDS Counseling and Testing Among Premarital Couples in China," was published in AIDS Education and Prevention (2005;17(1):12-21).
AIDS Weekly & Law
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.