Understanding Heterosexual Condom Use Among Homeless Men

Published In: AIDS and Behavior, v. 17, no. 5, June 2013, p. 1637-1644

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 2012

by Joan S. Tucker, Suzanne L. Wenzel, Daniela Golinelli, David P. Kennedy, Brett Ewing, Samuel Wertheimer

Read More

Access further information on this document at Springer

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

This study uses an event-based approach to examine individual, relationship, and contextual correlates of heterosexual condom use among homeless men. Structured interviews were conducted with a predominantly African American sample of 305 men recruited from meal lines in the Skid Row area of Los Angeles. Men reported on their most recent heterosexual event involving vaginal or anal intercourse. Adjusting for demographic characteristics only, condom use was more likely when men had higher condom use self-efficacy, greater HIV knowledge, or talked to their partner about condoms prior to sex. Condom use was less likely when men held more negative attitudes towards condoms, the partner was considered to be a primary/serious partner, hard drug use preceded sex, or sex occurred in a public setting. Condom attitudes, self-efficacy, partner type, and communication were the strongest predictors of condom use in a multivariate model that included all of the above-mentioned factors. Associations of unprotected sex with hard drug use prior to sex and having sex in public settings could be accounted for by lower condom self-efficacy and/or less positive condom attitudes among men having sex under these conditions. Results suggest that it may be promising to adapt existing, evidence-based IMB interventions for delivery in non-traditional settings that are frequented by men experiencing homelessness to achieve HIV risk reduction and thus reduce a significant point of disparity for the largely African American population of homeless men.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

Our mission to help improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis is enabled through our core values of quality and objectivity and our unwavering commitment to the highest level of integrity and ethical behavior. To help ensure our research and analysis are rigorous, objective, and nonpartisan, we subject our research publications to a robust and exacting quality-assurance process; avoid both the appearance and reality of financial and other conflicts of interest through staff training, project screening, and a policy of mandatory disclosure; and pursue transparency in our research engagements through our commitment to the open publication of our research findings and recommendations, disclosure of the source of funding of published research, and policies to ensure intellectual independence. For more information, visit www.rand.org/about/principles.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.