203970 Young African American Females' HIV Testing Knowledge, Beliefs, and Sexual Behaviors

Monday, November 9, 2009: 12:30 PM

Deborah A. Fortune, PhD , Department of Public Health Education, North Carolina Central University, Durham, NC
Joyce Spruill, MS , Department of Curriculum & Instruction, Bennett College for Women, Greensboro, NC
Millicent Rainey, EdD , Department of Social Sciences & Education, Bennett College for Women, Greensboro, NC
African American women are disproportionally affected by HIV/AIDS, especially young African American females. The purpose of the study was to assess the HIV testing knowledge, beliefs and sexual behaviors of young African American females aged 13-22. The participants were administered a pre-test and post test to assess their HIV testing knowledge, beliefs and sexual behaviors. The significance of the study is to advance the understanding of African American females' knowledge about HIV testing and sexual behaviors in order to prevent HIV transmission among young African American females. The major findings of the study included the following: 1) approximately 62.5% of the participants rated their knowledge about HIV testing from low to very low; 2) only 10.0% of the participants absolutely plan to have a HIV test in the next six months; 3) approximately 57.5% of the participants were very interested in learning more about HIV/AIDS and HIV testing; and 4) the majority of the participants reported not engaging in sexual activities (oral, vaginal, and anal sex), although 30% of them felt most of their friends have had vaginal sex. The major conclusions of the study were: 1) most of the participants' knowledge of HIV testing is low; 2) most of the participants do not intend to get tested for HIV within six months; and 3) most of the participants were not engaging in sexual activities, however, they felt the majority of their friends were having vaginal sex.

Learning Objectives:
At the end of the session, the participants should be able to: 1. Discuss young African American femalesí knowledge of HIV testing. 2. Describe young African American femalesí beliefs toward HIV testing. 3. Describe the sexual behaviors of young African American females and their perceptions of their friendsí sexual behaviors.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Ph.D. in Public Health Education. 12 years experience as director of national HIV prevention and school health project
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.