Respondent-driven sampling as a recruitment method for men who have sex with men in southern sub-Saharan Africa: a cross-sectional analysis by wave

Shauna Stahlman, Lisa G. Johnston, Clarence Yah, Sosthenes Ketende, Sibusiso Maziya, Gift Trapence, Vincent Jumbe, Bhekie Sithole, Tampose Mothopeng, Zandile Mnisi, Stefan Baral

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Objectives Respondent-driven sampling (RDS) is a popular method for recruiting men who have sex with men (MSM). Our objective is to describe the ability of RDS to reach MSM for HIV testing in three southern African nations. Methods Data collected via RDS among MSM in Lesotho (N=318), Swaziland (N=310) and Malawi (N=334) were analysed by wave in order to characterise differences in sample characteristics. Seeds were recruited from MSM-affiliated community-based organisations. Men were interviewed during a single study visit and tested for HIV. 2 tests for trend were used to examine differences in the proportions across wave category. Results A maximum of 13-19 recruitment waves were achieved in each study site. The percentage of those who identified as gay/homosexual decreased as waves increased in Lesotho (49% to 27%, p<0.01). In Swaziland and Lesotho, knowledge that anal sex was the riskiest type of sex for HIV transmission decreased across waves (39% to 23%, p<0.05, and 37% to 19%, p<0.05). The percentage of participants who had ever received more than one HIV test decreased across waves in Malawi (31% to 12%, p<0.01). In Lesotho and Malawi, the prevalence of testing positive for HIV decreased across waves (48% to 15%, p<0.01 and 23% to 11%, p<0.05). Among those living with HIV, the proportion of those unaware of their status increased across waves in all study sites although this finding was not statistically significant. Conclusions RDS that extends deeper into recruitment waves may be a promising method of reaching MSM with varying levels of HIV prevention needs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)292-298
Number of pages7
JournalSexually transmitted infections
Volume92
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2016

Keywords

  • AFRICA
  • GAY MEN
  • HIV
  • IMPLEMENTATION SCIENCE
  • PREVENTION

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Dermatology
  • Infectious Diseases

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