Factors associated with testing for HIV in people aged ≥50 years

BMC Public Health 2018 18:1204

https://doi.org/10.1186/s12889-018-6118-x

Published: 26 October 2018

Factors associated with testing for HIV in people aged ≥50 years: a qualitative study

Abstract

Background

Despite a decline in the number of new HIV infections in the UK overall, the number and proportion of new HIV diagnoses in people aged ≥50 years continues to increase. People aged ≥50 years are disproportionately affected by late diagnosis, which is associated with poorer health outcomes, increased treatment complexity and increased healthcare costs. Late HIV diagnosis also has significant public health implications in terms of onward HIV transmission. It is not fully understood what factors affect the decision of an older person to test for HIV. The aim of this study was to identify factors associated with testing for HIV in people aged ≥50 years who tested late for HIV.

Methods

We interviewed 20 people aged ≥50 years diagnosed late with HIV to identify factors associated with HIV testing. Interviews were audio recorded, transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed.

Results

Seven themes associated with HIV testing in people aged ≥50 years were identified: experience of early HIV/AIDS campaigns, HIV knowledge, presence of symptoms and symptom attribution, risk and risk perception, generational approaches to health and sexual health, stigma, and type of testing and testing venue.

Conclusion

Some factors associated with testing identified in this study were unique to older individuals. People aged ≥50 years often do not perceive themselves to be at risk of HIV. Further, stigma and a lack of knowledge of how to access HIV testing suggest a need for health promotion and suggest current sexual health services may need to adapt to better meet their needs.

How we inherit masculine and feminine behaviours: a new idea about environment and genes

The Conversation, August 18, 2017 3.22pm AEST

What if thousands of years of gendered environments actually reduced the need to develop genetic mechanisms to ensure gender differences? This is the idea we suggest in our new paper.

Advances in evolutionary biology recognise that offspring don’t just inherit genes. They also reliably inherit all kinds of resources: a particular ecology, a nest, parents and peers. And it appears that these stable environmental factors can help ensure the reliable reproduction of a trait across generations.

New study shows Americans are having sex less often, especially young people

San Diego State University,  7 March 2017

According to a new study published in the journal Archives of Sexual Behavior today, Americans who were married or living together had sex 16 fewer times per year in 2010-2014 compared to 2000-2004.

A critical factor appears to be birth cohort, with later-born generations having sex less often than those born earlier in the 20th century.

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