Increasing HIV Testing Among Latinos by Bundling HIV Testing with Other Tests
Published in: Journal of Urban Health, v. 83, no. 5, Sep. 2006, p. 849-859
Latinos in the United States are disproportionately impacted by HIV/AIDS. They accounted for 20.4% of the AIDS cases reported in 2003, despite the fact that they represent 13.3% of the civilian non-institutional population of the United States. Thus it is important to identify ways to increase HIV testing among Latinos engaging in high risk behaviors. One approach that has been proposed for increasing HIV testing is the bundling of HIV prevention interventions with other relevant services. This study examined whether offering HIV testing with screening for other conditions would increase HIV testing among Latino men who frequent gay bars. A cross-sectional survey of 394 Latino men was conducted at both urban and suburban gay bars. Overall, no statistical differences were found in the number of individuals who took the HIV test or who tested HIV-positive when the HIV test was offered with screening for other conditions (alcohol problems, drug dependence, depression, syphilis, gonorrhea and chlamydia) compared to when it was offered by itself. However, multivariate analysis found that three groups of Latino men were more likely to test for HIV when it was bundled with other tests: those who reported having sex primarily with women, those with other risk factors that could also be tested through a bundled test approach, and those who were clients of the suburban gay bar that was farthest from a large geographical gay community. Further studies of bundled HIV testing should be conducted with other key subpopulations that may be more willing to take an HIV test when it is offered with other relevant tests than when offered by itself.