Apr 3, 2007
Published in: Journal of Sex Research, v. 44, no. 1, 2007, p. 49-58
Posted on RAND.org on December 31, 2006
This study sought to describe religiosity and denominational affiliation among the U.S. population living with HIV and to test whether either is associated with HIV-related sexual risk behaviors. A Nationally representative sample of 1,421 people in care for HIV, 932 of whom reported recent sexual activity, was used. Religiosity was associated with fewer sexual partners and a lower likelihood of engaging in unprotected sex and in high-risk sex. Catholics were less likely to report unprotected sex than were other Christians, adherents of non-Christian religions, and those reporting no religious affiliation. Catholics were also less likely than other Christians to report high-risk sex and reported fewer sexual partners compared to those of non-Christian religions. The authors did not observe a difference between Catholics and Evangelicals in the three sexual behaviors investigated Results suggest that religiosity and some religious teachings may promote safer sex among people with HIV.