Age-related factors influence HIV testing within subpopulations: a cross-sectional survey of MSM within the Celtic nations

Dalrymple, J., McAloney-Kocaman, K., Flowers, P. , McDaid, L. M. and Frankis, J. S. (2019) Age-related factors influence HIV testing within subpopulations: a cross-sectional survey of MSM within the Celtic nations. Sexually Transmitted Infections, 95(5), pp. 351-357. (doi: 10.1136/sextrans-2018-053935) (PMID:31201278) (PMCID:PMC6642694)

186878.pdf - Accepted Version



Objectives: Despite a recent fall in the incidence of HIV within the UK, men who have sex with men (MSM) continue to be disproportionately affected. As biomedical prevention technologies including pre-exposure prophylaxis are increasingly taken up to reduce transmission, the role of HIV testing has become central to the management of risk. Against a background of lower testing rates among older MSM, this study aimed to identify age-related factors influencing recent (≤12 months) HIV testing. Methods: Cross-sectional subpopulation data from an online survey of sexually active MSM in the Celtic nations—Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and Ireland (n=2436)—were analysed to compare demographic, behavioural and sociocultural factors influencing HIV testing between MSM aged 16–25 (n=447), 26–45 (n=1092) and ≥46 (n=897). Results: Multivariate logistic regression demonstrated that for men aged ≥46, not identifying as gay (OR 0.62, CI 0.41 to 0.95), location (Wales) (OR 0.49, CI 0.32 to 0.76) and scoring higher on the personalised Stigma Scale (OR 0.97, CI 0.94 to 1.00) significantly reduced the odds for HIV testing in the preceding year. Men aged 26–45 who did not identify as gay (OR 0.61, CI 0.41 to 0.92) were also significantly less likely to have recently tested for HIV. For men aged 16–25, not having a degree (OR 0.48, CI 0.29 to 0.79), location (Republic of Ireland) (OR 0.55, CI 0.30 to 1.00) and scoring higher on emotional competence (OR 0.57, CI 0.42 to 0.77) were also significantly associated with not having recently tested for HIV. Conclusion: Key differences in age-related factors influencing HIV testing suggest health improvement interventions should accommodate the wide diversities among MSM populations across the life course. Future research should seek to identify barriers and enablers to HIV testing among the oldest and youngest MSM, with specific focus on education and stigma.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Flowers, Professor Paul and McDaid, Professor Lisa
Authors: Dalrymple, J., McAloney-Kocaman, K., Flowers, P., McDaid, L. M., and Frankis, J. S.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > Institute of Health and Wellbeing > MRC/CSO SPHSU
Journal Name:Sexually Transmitted Infections
Publisher:BMJ Publishing Group
ISSN (Online):1472-3263
Published Online:14 June 2019
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2019 The Authors
First Published:First published in Sexually Transmitted Infections 95(5):351-357
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the publisher copyright policy

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
727631SPHSU Core Renewal: Relationships & Health Improvement Research ProgrammeLisa McDaidMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/11IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU
Chief Scientist Office (CSO)SPHSU11
727641SPHSU Core Renewal: Setting and Health Improvement Research ProgrammeKathryn HuntMedical Research Council (MRC)MC_UU_12017/12IHW - MRC/CSO SPHU
Chief Scientist Office (CSO)SPHSU12