Sunday, February 7, 2016

HIV Risk & Behaviour among Part-Time vs Professional Female Sex Workers: Baseline Report of an Interventional Cohort in Burkina Faso

To readjust HIV control programmes in Africa, we assessed the factors associated with high-risk behaviours and HIV infection among young female sex workers (FSW) in Burkina Faso.

We carried out a cross-sectional study from September 2009 to September 2010 in Ouagadougou, the capital city. FSW were categorised as professionals and part-time sex workers (PTSW). After a face-to-face questionnaire, blood and urine samples were collected for HIV, HSV-2, genital infections and pregnancy. High-risk behaviour was defined as a recent unprotected sex with either casual clients, regular clients or regular partners.

We recruited 609 FSW including 188 (30.9%) professionals. Their median age was 21 years (IQR 19-23), and the prevalence of HIV was 10.3% among professionals and 6.5% among PTSW. Only 3 of 46 HIV-infected women were aware of their status. Overall, 277 (45.6%) women reported high-risk behaviours (41.2% among professionals and 47.5% among PTSW), which were driven mainly by non-systematic condom use with regular partners. In multivariable analysis, PTSW and having a primary or higher education level remained associated with high-risk behaviours. HIV infection was associated with older age with being married/cohabiting and with Trichomonas vaginalis infection, while history of HIV testing was associated with a decreased risk.

This study highlights the need for targeted interventions among young FSW focusing particularly on PTSW, sexual behaviours with regular partners and regular HIV testing.

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  • 1Department of Clinical Research, Centre Muraz, Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso.
  • 2Centre of International Research for Health, University of Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.
  • 3Department of Clinical Research, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, London, UK.
  • 4CHU Montpellier & INSERM U1058, Montpellier, France.
  • 5Department of Public Health, Centre Muraz, Bobo-Dioulasso, Burkina Faso Department of Public Health, University of Ouagadougou, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. 
  •  2016 Feb 1. pii: sextrans-2015-052038. doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2015-052038.

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