HIV self-testing for men who have sex with men in Sweden. A cross-sectional study concerning interest to use HIV self-tests

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Abstract

Background: HIV self-testing (HIVST) has been found to have high acceptability among men who have sex with men (MSM) internationally and might contribute to increase testing frequencies, but many countries, including Sweden, lack policies for using HIVST. Objective: To examine interest to use and willingness to pay for HIVST, and associated factors, among MSM attending HIV testing venues in Sweden. Method: This cross-sectional study analyzed data from a self-administered survey, consisting of 33 questions, collected at six HIV testing venues in Sweden in 2018. The sample consisted of sexually active men who have sex with men, aged ≥ 18 years, and not diagnosed with HIV. Data were analyzed descriptively and by univariable and multivariable logistic regression. Result: Among 663 participants (median age 33 years), 436 respondents (65.8%) expressed interest to use HIVST. Among those interested, less than half, 205 (47.0%), were willing to pay for HIVST. Being interested in HIVST was found to be negatively associated with being in the 55 years or older age group (AOR 0.31, CI 0.14–0.71), and having had syphilis, rectal chlamydia, or rectal gonorrhea in the preceding 12 months (AOR 0.56, CI 0.32–0.99). In the sample of MSM interested in HIVST, willingness to pay was positively associated with being in the age groups 35–44 years (AOR 2.94, CI 1.40–6.21), 45–54 years (AOR 2.82, CI 1.16–6.90), and 55 years or above (AOR 3.90, CI 1.19–12.81), and negatively associated with being single (AOR 0.56, CI 0.36–0.88). Conclusion: This study found high interest for HIVST in a sample of MSM in Sweden. However, HIVST offered at a cost is likely to negatively affect uptake among MSM broadly, compared with free availability.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2021631
JournalGlobal Health Action
Volume15
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology

Keywords

  • HIV policy
  • HIV prevention
  • HIVST
  • key populations
  • MSM

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