HIV risk behaviour among public primary healthcare patients with tuberculosis in South Africa
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Objective. To identify factors associated with HIV in tuberculosis (TB) patients in a public primary healthcare (PHC) setting in South Africa (SA).
Method. Among 4 900 consecutively selected TB patients (54.5% men; women 45.5%) from 42 public PHC clinics in 3 districts in SA,
a cross-sectional survey was performed to assess new TB and new TB retreatment patients within one month of anti-TB treatment.
Results. The sample comprised 76.6% new TB patients and 23.4% TB retreatment patients. Of those who had tested for HIV,
59.9% were HIV-positive; 9.6% had never tested for HIV. In multivariate analysis, older age (odds ratio (OR) 5.86; confidence
interval (CI) 4.07 - 8.44), female gender (OR 0.47; CI 0.37 - 0.59), residing in an informal settlement (OR 1.55; CI 1.13 - 2.12),
being a TB retreatment patient (OR 0.55; CI 0.42 - 0.72), occasions of sexual intercourse with condom use (OR 1.07; CI 1.02 -
1.13) and having a sexual partner receiving antiretroviral treatment (ART) (OR 7.09, CI 4.35 - 11.57) were associated with an
HIV-positive status in TB patients.
Conclusion. This study revealed high HIV risk behaviour (e.g. unprotected last sexual intercourse and alcohol and drug use in the
context of sexual intercourse) among TB patients in SA. Various factors were associated with HIV risk behaviour. Condom use and
substance use risk reduction need to be considered as HIV-prevention measures when planning such strategies for TB patients.