Cover: Response to the AIDS Epidemic

Response to the AIDS Epidemic

A Survey of Homosexual and Bisexual Men in Los Angeles County

Published 1991

by David E. Kanouse, Sandra H. Berry, Michael Gorman, Elizabeth Yano, Sally Carson

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This report documents the results of a telephone survey conducted between October 1989 and January 1990 on a random sample of 300 self-identified gay and bisexual men in Los Angeles County. The survey measured knowledge about transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, the occurrence of sexual and drug-related risk behaviors linked to HIV transmission, attitudes and beliefs about prevention measures, personal decisions regarding testing for HIV antibodies, health insurance coverage, and use of health care services. Results indicate that nearly all gay and bisexual men in the county know how HIV is transmitted. Despite a major decrease in the occurrence of high-risk behavior in this population, there is room for further change: many men still practice behaviors that could lead to HIV transmission if one partner is infected. About two-thirds of those interviewed had voluntarily sought testing for HIV antibodies, and 85 percent thought gay and bisexual men in Los Angeles County should be encouraged to seek testing. Twenty percent of those interviewed lacked health insurance coverage, and many others were vulnerable to loss of coverage should they lose their employment.

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