Author(s): Sharma R
Abstract Share this page
Abstract Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) testing with pre and postcounseling aiming behavior change communication (BCC) for core/bridge population is the main element of holistic model of health care. Voluntary counseling and testing center (VCTC) remodeled as integrated counseling and testing center (ICTC)-general is the 'gateways to care'. It was hospital-based cross sectional study of 811 clients registered at VCTC of Kesar SAL Hospital from January to December 2007. These patients either came voluntarily or by referral. Anonymous and unlinked information was collected on predesigned schedule and data was analyzed to find out the seropositivity, demographic characteristics (among attendees and HIV positives), and epidemiological vulnerability of different segments of population. Among the attendees, 64\% were males, 75\% in the age group of 20-49 years, 80\% were currently married, and 70\% were literate (< 10(th) standard). Also, 66\% clients were gainfully employed, while one-fourth were housewives; 98\% lived with families, 75\% were referred by doctors, and only 19\% walked in directly. Dominant reason for visiting ICTC was the history/presence of high risk behavior (HRB) (34\%). 35\% indulged in heterosexual route; other HRB (men having sex with men or MSM and injecting drug users or IDU) were rare. There were more positive among males, 20-49 years of age group, those living singly, unmarried, divorcee, widow(er) and separated. Similarly positives were more amongst illiterates, less educated and those engaged in unskilled and semi skilled jobs. Adolescent students (>14 years) accounted for one-fifth of the total positives. Direct walk in clients were more positive compared to those referred by doctors. Those who confessed of history/presence of HRB accounted for all except 3 (85\%) positives. 51\% indulged in heterosexual sex followed by MSM (8\%). Overall sero positivity was 4.8\%; high in males, 30-49 years age, unmarried and divorcee etc. Sero prevalence decreased with improvement in education and also with improvement in job nature. It was also high in those living alone compared to those staying with their family.Such study shall in evaluating the performance of ICTC and designing the information, education, and communication (IEC) to increase the client uptake in terms of quality and quantity.
This article was published in Indian J Sex Transm Dis
and referenced in Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy