Online Program

Examining the Influence of Significant Others on HIV Testing Intentions among African Americans in North Carolina

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Alexandra Marshall, PhD, MPH, CPH, CHES, Department of Health Behavior & Health Education, Fay W. Boozman College of Public Health, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR
Duston Morris, PhD, MS, CHES, ACE-CPT, Health Sciences Department, University of Central Arkansas, Conway, AR
Background: HIV/AIDS disproportionately affects African Americans in the U.S. In 2010, African Americans made up 44% of new HIV cases, despite only being 14% of the U.S. population. HIV testing helps control transmission. Significant others may influence HIV testing. The purpose of this study was to assess the influence of significant others on HIV testing intentions among African American males and females in Durham, NC.

Methods: A convenience sample of participants (N=100), who were African American males (n=55) and females ages 18-80, were recruited from a health clinic in Durham, NC. They completed a 20-item survey. Participants were asked about relationship status and HIV testing behaviors. Sexual orientation was not assessed. Using the Theory of Planned Behavior, participants self-reported subjective norms, attitudes, perceived behavioral control, and behavioral intentions regarding HIV testing.

Results: Most participants (64%) indicated having a significant other. Most participants (71%) reported testing for HIV within the past 6 months. About half (53%) of the participants reported testing every 6 months. Results of the chi-square analyses revealed no significant association between gender and intentions to test for HIV with a significant other X2 (df=2, N=100) =.164, p=.26, phi=.164.  There was no significant association between gender and being tested for HIV despite the significant other not wanting to be tested X2 (df=2, N=100) =.198, p=.14, phi=.198.  

Conclusions: Significant others did not influence HIV testing intentions among African American participants in the study. Participants indicated strong intentions. HIV testing advocacy may be working; however, recommendations to revise HIV testing strategies are provided.  

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Advocacy for health and health education
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Provision of health care to the public
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
describe the strength of HIV testing intentions among a group of African Americans in North Carolina

Keyword(s): HIV/AIDS, Health Promotion and Education

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: In my graduate education I have focused on sexual health specifically related to sexuality, relationships and HIV/STI prevention. Among my research endeavors, I have been the co-investigator on several projects examining HIV testing, perceptions of HIV/AIDS and HIV prevention behaviors.
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.

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