Evaluating HIV Risk Factors and Willingness to Use Prep among African American Collegiate Women
Estefany S. Bologna, Sunddip Panesar-Aguilar, Michelle McCraney, Chris Cale

African American women, especially those residing in the Southern United States (U.S.), are impacted by multiple socioeconomic, behavioral, physical, and personal factors increasing their risk of contracting HIV. Pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) is a novel, effective, individual-controlled pharmacological approach to prevent HIV. Although some African American women have expressed a desire to use PrEP, this method has been underutilized in this population. There is a lack of research examining factors that affect African American women’s willingness to use PrEP. The present study evaluated factors to predict African American collegiate women’s willingness to initiate PrEP. Results indicated that marital status, history of trauma, and intimate and partner violence were significant predictors of PrEP acceptability for African American collegiate women. Most participants did not know about PrEP and reported a willingness to use PrEP, especially if they thought they were at high risk or had a HIV-positive partner. Participants with a history of intimate partner violence were at higher risk for HIV and expressed more willingness to use PrEP. When optimizing PrEP implementation for women at risk for HIV, it is important to incorporate trauma-informed care, safety planning, and psychological interventions within HIV prevention initiatives.

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