142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition

Annual Meeting Recordings are now available for purchase

High Rates of Risks for HIV and other STIs among Sexual Minority Women in Jackson, Mississippi

142nd APHA Annual Meeting and Exposition (November 15 - November 19, 2014): http://www.apha.org/events-and-meetings/annual
Monday, November 17, 2014 : 1:00 PM - 1:15 PM

Sarah Maccarthy, DSc , Division of Infectious Diseases, Brown University, Providence, RI
Leandro Mena, MD , University of Mississippi Medical Center, Jackson, MS
Philip Chan
Jennifer Rose
Dantrell Simmons, MA , School of Health Sciences, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS
Michael Hoffmann
Amaya Perez-Brumer
Amy Nunn
Nicholas Chamberlain
Reginald Riggins
OBJECTIVE: Sexual minority women are often overlooked in HIV and STI-related studies however emerging evidence suggests this population may experience substantial vulnerabilities increasing their risk of transmission. Therefore we assessed individual and partner-level risk factors associated with HIV and STI transmission among sexual minority women in the Deep South.

METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted among women (n=851) presenting for routine care at an urban STI clinic in Jackson, Mississippi. Differences between sexual minority women (10.1%) compared to their heterosexual counterparts (89.9%) were examined using bivariate and GEE analyses, disaggregated by self-reported sexual orientation. Identified risk factors associated with HIV infection, such as alcohol and drug use and the sexual behaviors of participants and their sexual partners, were investigated.

RESULTS: The overall prevalence for chlamydia and gonorrhea were 17.5% and 5.4%, respectively, whereas self-reported past history of any STI was 31.5% for women. Sexual minority women were more likely to have a higher number of sexual partners (OR 2.54, 95%CI 1.47-4.38), engage in transactional sex (OR 2.52, 95%CI 1.25-5.11) and report individual as well as partner substance use at last sex (individual: OR 2.83, 95%CI 1.88-4.26; partner: OR 2.27, 95%CI 1.56-3.32). Further, they reported higher levels of substance abuse across all categories.

CONCLUSIONS: These results highlight high-risk sexual practices among sexual minority women that may substantially increase their HIV and STI related risk. There is an urgent need to better understand factors associated with HIV and STI vulnerability among this population in the Deep South.

Learning Areas:

Public health or related research
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the prevalence of STIs among sexual minority women tested at an urban STI clinic in Jackson, Mississippi (MS). Identify risk factors associated with HIV and STI transmission among sexual minority women in Jackson, MS. Assess the association between high-risk sexual practices and HIV and STI infection among sexual minority women in Jackson, MS.

Keyword(s): STDs/STI, HIV/AIDS

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: Sarah MacCarthy is postdoctoral fellow at Brown University and a Global Health and Human Rights Fellow at the University of Southern California. Dr. MacCarthy completed her masters and doctorate at the Harvard School of Public Health in the Department of Global Health and Population with a focus on sexual and reproductive health and human rights. Increasingly her work is focused on the health of sexual and gender minorities, especially in the Deep South.
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.