Patients’ response to an emergency department-based HIV testing program and perception of their friends’ attitudes on HIV testing among patients seeking care at an urban emergency department in Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Cassie Wicken, Ama Avornu, Carl A. Latkin, Melissa A. Davey-Rothwell, Jim Kim, Raza Zaidi, Richard Rothman, Yu Hsiang Hsieh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Background: Little is known regarding the possible role of social network members and peer attitudes on emergency department (ED) patients’ willingness to be tested for HIV. Methods: We conducted mixed methods in-depth interview and quantitative survey with ED patients from November 2013 to June 2014 to assess peer and personal perceptions of ED-based HIV testing. Patients enrolled were asked about their own attitudes toward HIV testing as well as those of their friends. Interviews were transcribed and categories that captured free responses in the verbatim were independently coded by two reviewers. Results: Overall, 86 patients were enrolled including 22 HIV known positive. Among 64 HIV-negative participants, 50 were tested during the past 12 months and 4 had never been tested. The majority (82.5%) of participants thought that their friends were likely to accept HIV testing in EDs. Participants discussed their perceptions of friends’ attitudes toward HIV testing: the majority (60%) believed their friends held positive attitudes about HIV testing. The majority of participants believed that their friends had positive feelings about HIV testing and were likely to accept testing in ED settings. Conclusions: Interventions utilizing peer networks to promote HIV testing and increase testing acceptance could be designed and explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)104-109
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Infection and Public Health
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2020

Keywords

  • Emergency department
  • HIV testing
  • HIV testing history
  • Peer's perceptions and attitudes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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