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.

‘Sussing that doctor out’: Experiences of people affected by hepatitis C regarding private GPs in SA

‘Sussing that doctor out.’ Experiences and perspectives of people affected by hepatitis C regarding engagement with private general practitioners in South Australia: a qualitative study

BMC Fam Pract. 2017 Nov 29;18(1):97. doi: 10.1186/s12875-017-0669-2.

Abstract

Background: Australians with chronic hepatitis C (HCV) can access affordable Direct Acting Antiviral (DAA) treatments with high cure rates (>90%), via General Practitioners (GPs). Benefits from this treatment will be maximised if people with HCV readily disclose and engage with private GPs regarding HCV-related issues. Investigating the perceptions and experiences of people affected by HCV with GPs can allow for this pathway to care for HCV to be improved.

Methods: In 2013–2014, 22 purposively sampled participants from South Australia (SA) were interviewed. They a) had contracted or were at risk of hepatitis C (n = 10), b) were key workers who had clients affected by HCV (n = 6), and c) met both a) and b) criteria (n = 6). The semi-structured interviews were recorded, transcribed and thematically analysed.

Results: People affected by HCV viewed GPs as a source of general healthcare but, due to negative experiences and perceptions, many developed a strategy of “sussing” out doctors before engaging with and disclosing to a GP regarding HCV-related issues. Participants were doubtful about the benefits of engagement and disclosure, and did not assume that they would be provided best-practice care in a non-discriminatory, non-judgemental way. They perceived risks to confidentiality and risks of changes to the care they received from GPs upon disclosure.

Conclusion: GPs may need to act in ways that counteract the perceived risks and persuade people affected by HCV of the benefits of seeking HCV-related care.

First medical study on chest binding recently published

The first medical study on chest binding transgender and non-binary people was published last year. 

The researchers hope that the study will provide an initial roadmap for change, educating physicians on the benefits and impacts of binding and allowing those who bind to take charge of their health. They scoured peer-reviewed literature and information from health clinics, LGBTQ organizations, and online community resources, coming up with 28 potential health outcomes from binding. 1,800 respondents answered an online survey with questions ranging from how often they bound, what they used to bind their chests with, and their gender identity.

  • Read more about the study and chest-binding here 
  • Read study abstract here (for full text, see your librarian)

Understanding expert views on defining & reaching heterosexually-identified MSM for health promotion & care

UNSW, July 2016

BRISE StraightMSM Study
Almost no published research exists specifically on heterosexually-identified men who have sex with men in Australia, and the international literature is also scant. Very little is known about the sexual practices, risk perceptions, or information and service needs of these men more broadly.
The proportion of heterosexually-identified men who have acquired HIV through
sex with men (and report this either as sex with a man, or ‘risk not further specified’) is unknown. This means that any specific needs or opportunities to tailor health
promotion and care to this sub-group are currently overlooked.
Funded by BRISE, the Centre for Social Research in Health, in collaboration with Pozhet and representatives of NSW Health sexual health services, conducted exploratory research to investigate the sexual practices, sexual spaces, sexual health knowledge and sexual health needs of these men, and to consider opportunities to better engage them with health promotion and care.
This report summarises the key outcomes of this pilot research, which comprised reviewing the literature, analysing existing survey data, appraising the terminology and activities evident in online personal ads posted by straight men who have sex with men, and conducting qualitative interviews with 30 professionals employed in health services, health promotion and other relevant roles in New South Wales.
Download report (PDF, 12 pages) here

 

 

Media representations of violence against women and their children: Final report

ANROWS, Monday, 6th June 2016

This project aimed to establish the extent and nature of reporting of violence against women by the Australian media to inform future strategies for change.

Using both quantitative (content analysis) and qualitative (critical discourse analysis) methods, the study provided a glimpse into the complexity of reporting practices.

It found that:

 

  • There is a clear link between media reporting and attitudes and beliefs in relation to violence against women, with audiences’ emotional responses and attributions of responsibility affected by how the media frames news.
  • The vast majority of reporting on violence against women was “incident based”, looking at tragic individual instances, but not exploring the issue in a more depth.

Read more here