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Barriers to HIV testing as reported by individuals newly diagnosed with HIV infection in Sweden

George-Svahn, L., Eriksson, L. E. ORCID: 0000-0001-5121-5325, Wiklander, M. , Björling, G., Svedhem, V. & Brännström, J. (2021). Barriers to HIV testing as reported by individuals newly diagnosed with HIV infection in Sweden. AIDS Care, 33(10), pp. 1286-1295. doi: 10.1080/09540121.2020.1844862


Despite the availability of free and anonymous HIV testing almost 60% of Swedish patients are diagnosed late. Identifying predictors of different types of barriers could inform policy makers and health care of interventions to increase testing where needed. This cross-sectional study aimed to describe and analyze barriers to HIV testing as reported by Swedish patients newly diagnosed with HIV infection. N = 285 patients completed the 18-item Barriers to HIV Testing Scale - Karolinska Version. Descriptive analysis and logistic regressions were performed to assess the prevalence of barriers and to identify predictors for the different investigated barriers. Barriers to testing were reported by 60%. Approximately 67% of patients originating from Sweden, 50% from Sub-Saharan Africa and 75% from Eastern European/East Asian countries reported barriers. Patients who were younger and patients who self-initiated HIV testing, had greater odds of reporting a barrier than older individuals and those who were offered a test through screening or by a healthcare professional. To counteract barriers that still exist on an individual level, healthcare-initiated HIV testing could be offered more broadly and information about risks for transmission and effectiveness of HIV treatment still needs to be disseminated among both people born in Sweden and different migrant groups.

Publication Type: Article
Publisher Keywords: HIV; HIV testing; prevention; barriers; psychometrics
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
R Medicine > RT Nursing
Departments: School of Health & Psychological Sciences > Nursing
Text - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons: Attribution International Public License 4.0.

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