Evaluation of the Making Employment Needs (MEN) Count Intervention to Reduce HIV/STI Risk for Black Heterosexual Men in Washington DC.
ABSTRACT: The primary aim of this study was to evaluate the impact of MEN Count, a race- and gender-tailored three-session counseling intervention, on HIV/STI incidence as well as housing and employment. A two-armed quasi-experimental design was used to compare MEN Count to an attention comparison condition focused on stress reduction, from March 2014 to April 2017. Participants (N = 454) were Black heterosexual men in Washington DC, largely recruited from an STI clinic. Multivariate difference-in-difference regressions assessed whether the intervention was associated with significant changes in the outcomes set, which included nonviral STI incidence, sexual risk categorization, housing, and employment. Significant improvements over time were observed across both treatment arms for all outcomes (p < .05). Reductions in unemployment were significantly greater for intervention than for control participants (AOR unemployment = 0.48, 95% CI [0.23, 0.99]). Improvements in other outcomes did not differ significantly by treatment group. In dose analyses, participants receiving all intervention sessions were significantly less likely than control participants to have experienced homelessness in the 90 days prior (AOR= 0.31, 95% CI [0.10, 0.96]) and to be unemployed (AOR = 0.37, 95% CI [0.14, 0.96]). The MEN Count intervention offers a promising approach to address structural risk factors for STI, but not STI itself, among this largely STI clinic-based sample.
Project description:The incidence of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV infection remains high in gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM) in the UK, and sexualized drug use ("chemsex") and injecting drug use ("slamsex") may play a part in this. We aimed to characterize HIV-positive MSM engaging in chemsex/slamsex and to assess the associations with self-reported STI diagnoses and sexual behaviours.Data from a 2014 survey of people attending HIV clinics in England and Wales were linked to clinical data from national HIV surveillance records and weighted to be nationally representative. Multivariable logistic regression assessed the associations of chemsex and slamsex with self-reported unprotected anal intercourse (UAI), serodiscordant UAI (sdUAI) (i.e. UAI with an HIV-negative or unknown HIV status partner), sdUAI with a detectable viral load (>50 HIV-1 RNA copies/mL), hepatitis C, and bacterial STIs.In the previous year, 29.5% of 392 sexually active participants engaged in chemsex, and 10.1% in slamsex. Chemsex was significantly associated with increased odds of UAI [adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 5.73; P < 0.001], sdUAI (AOR 2.34; P < 0.05), sdUAI with a detectable viral load (AOR 3.86; P < 0.01), hepatitis C (AOR 6.58; P < 0.01), and bacterial STI diagnosis (AOR 2.65; P < 0.01). Slamsex was associated with increased odds of UAI (AOR 6.11; P < 0.05), hepatitis C (AOR 9.39; P < 0.001), and bacterial STI diagnosis (AOR 6.11; P < 0.001).Three in ten sexually active HIV-positive MSM engaged in chemsex in the past year, which was positively associated with self-reported depression/anxiety, smoking, nonsexual drug use, risky sexual behaviours, STIs, and hepatitis C. Chemsex may therefore play a role in the ongoing HIV and STI epidemics in the UK.
Project description:INTRODUCTION:The Amsterdam PrEP project is a prospective, open-label demonstration study at a large sexually transmitted infection (STI) clinic. We examined the uptake of PrEP; the baseline characteristics of men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender persons initiating PrEP; their choices of daily versus event-driven PrEP and the determinants of these choices. METHODS:From August 2015 through May 2016, enrolment took place at the STI clinic of the Public Health Service of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. MSM or transgender persons were eligible if they had at least one risk factor for HIV infection within the preceding six months. Participants were offered a choice between daily or event-driven use of tenofovir/emtricitabine. Baseline data were analysed using descriptive statistics and multivariable analysis was employed to determine variables associated with daily versus event-driven PrEP. RESULTS:Online applications were submitted by 870 persons, of whom 587 were invited for a screening visit. Of them, 415 were screened for eligibility and 376 initiated PrEP. One quarter (103/376, 27%) chose event-driven PrEP. Prevalence of bacterial STI was 19.0% and mean condomless anal sex (CAS) episodes in the preceding three months were 11. In multivariable analysis, older age (?45 vs. ?34, aOR 2.1, 95% CI 1.2 to 3.9), being involved in a steady relationship (aOR 1.7, 95% CI 1.0 to 2.7), no other daily medication use (aOR 0.6, 95% CI 0.3 to 0.9), and fewer episodes of CAS (per log increase aOR 0.7, 95% CI 0.6 to 0.9) were determinants for choosing event-driven PrEP. DISCUSSION:PrEP programmes are becoming one of the more important intervention strategies with the goal of reducing incident HIV-infection and we were unable to accommodate many of the persons applying for this study. Offering a choice of dosing regimen to PrEP users may enable further personalization of HIV prevention strategies and enhance up-take, adherence and cost-effectiveness. CONCLUSIONS:The majority of participants preferred daily versus event-driven use. Within this majority, a high number of CAS episodes before PrEP initiation was reported and we observed a high prevalence of STI. Determinants of choosing event-driven PrEP were older age, fewer CAS episodes, no other daily medication use, and involved in a steady relationship.
Project description:OBJECTIVES:In the UK, men who have sex with men (MSM) bear a disproportionate sexually transmitted infection (STI) burden. We investigated MSM's STI knowledge; whether their STI testing behaviour met national guidelines (annually if sexually active; 3-monthly if engaging in STI risk behaviours); and the relationship between STI testing in the last 3 months, STI knowledge and STI risk behaviours by HIV status. METHODS:Sexually active (in the last year) men aged > 15 years who were UK residents and were recruited from gay-orientated online dating platforms completed an anonymous online survey about STI knowledge, STI risk behaviours, and STI testing (March-May 2017). This included 11 true statements about STIs. Respondents scored 1 for each statement they 'knew', with those scoring < 6 overall treated as having 'poor' STI knowledge. Descriptive and multivariable analyses were conducted, separately by HIV status, to test our hypothesis and calculate adjusted odds ratios (AORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs). RESULTS:Compared to HIV-positive men (n = 489), the proportion of HIV-negative/unknown-status men (n = 3157) with 'poor' STI knowledge was significantly higher (46.4% versus 22.9% for HIV-positive men) and the proportion with STI testing in the last 12 months was lower (71.6% versus 87.2%, respectively). In the last 3 months, 56.9% of HIV-negative/unknown-status and 74.1% of HIV-positive men reported STI risk behaviours, of whom 45.8% and 55.1%, respectively, had been tested for STIs during this time. Among HIV-negative/unknown-status men, those reporting STI risk behaviours were more likely (AOR 1.52; 95% CI 1.26-1.84) and those with poor STI knowledge less likely (AOR 0.73; 95% CI 0.61-0.89) to have been tested during the last 3 months. However, neither factor was independently associated with 3-monthly testing among HIV-positive men. CONCLUSIONS:Improving STI knowledge, especially among HIV-negative/unknown-status men, and promoting frequent STI testing among men engaging in STI risk behaviours are vital to address the poor sexual health of MSM.
Project description:Lifelong ART is essential to reducing HIV mortality and ending the epidemic, however the interplay between socioeconomic position and long-term outcomes of HIV-infected persons receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) in sub-Saharan Africa is unknown. Furthering the understanding of factors related to long-term ART outcomes in this important region will aid the successful scale-up of ART programs. We enrolled 559 HIV-infected Ugandan adults starting ART in 2004-2005 at the Infectious Diseases Institute in Kampala, Uganda and followed them for 10 years. We documented baseline employment status, regular household income, education level, housing description, physical ability, and CD4 count. Viral load was measured every six months. Proportional hazard regression tested for associations between baseline characteristics and 1) mortality, 2) virologic failure, and 3) mortality or virologic failure as a composite outcome. Over ten years 23% (n = 127) of participants died, 6% (n = 31) were lost-to-follow-up and 23% (107/472) experienced virologic treatment failure. In Kaplan-Meier analysis we observed an association between employment and mortality, with the highest cumulative probability of death occurring in unemployed individuals. In univariate analysis unemployment and disease severity were associated with mortality, but in multivariable analysis the only association with mortality was disease severity. We observed an association between higher household income and an increased incidence of both virologic failure and the combined outcome, and an association between self-employment and lower incidence of virologic failure and the combined outcome when compared to unemployment. Formal education level and housing status were unrelated to outcomes. It is feasible to achieve good ten-year survival, retention-in-care, and viral suppression in a socioeconomically diverse population in a resource-limited setting. Unemployment appears to be related to adverse 10-year ART outcomes. A low level of formal education does not appear to be a barrier to successful long-term ART.
Project description:BACKGROUND:Men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women (TGW) are at risk for sexually transmitted infections (STIs), including those of the oropharynx. We estimated the prevalence and factors associated with oral sex practices and characterized oropharyngeal STIs among a cohort of MSM and TGW in Nigeria. METHODS:From 2013 to 2018, TRUST/RV368 recruited MSM and TGW into HIV/STI diagnosis and treatment at community-based clinics in Nigeria. Participants who completed HIV testing and oral sex questions at enrollment were selected. Cross-sectional analyses with bivariate and multivariable logistic regression models estimated odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs). Oropharyngeal swab testing for Neisseria gonorrhoeae (NG) and Chlamydia trachomatis (CT) began in 2014 and for those with diagnostic results at enrollment, the unadjusted association of oral sex practices with oropharyngeal STIs was conducted. RESULTS:A total of 1342 participants had a median age of 25 years (interquartile range: 22-29), 58% were living with HIV, and 69% reported oral sex practices. Factors associated with increased odds of engaging in oral sex included living with HIV (adjusted [a]OR: 1.4, 95% CI: 1.1-1.8), self-identifying as a woman (aOR:1.8, 95% CI: 1.1-2.8), mobile phone ownership (aOR:2.3, 95% CI: 1.3-3.9), receptive anal sex (aOR:1.7, 95% CI:1.3-2.3) and multiple male sexual partners (2 to 4 vs. ?1, aOR:1.5, 95% CI: 1.0-2.2; 5+ vs ?1, aOR:2.9, 95% CI:1.9-4.3). Oropharyngeal STI prevalence was 7% (52/752) and higher among those who engaged in oral sex compared to those who did not (unadjusted OR: 2.5, 95% CI:1.2-5.3). CONCLUSIONS:Oral sex was common and associated with an increased odds of oropharyngeal STIs among MSM and TGW from Nigeria. In the absence of screening and treatment guidelines, condoms continue to be the mainstay for oral STI prevention. A pre-exposure prophylaxis for bacterial STIs would complement current prevention strategies to curb transmission.
Project description:The reasons for black/white disparities in HIV epidemics among men who have sex with men have puzzled researchers for decades. Understanding reasons for these disparities requires looking beyond individual-level behavioral risk to a more comprehensive framework.From July 2010-December 2012, 803 men (454 black, 349 white) were recruited through venue-based and online sampling; consenting men were provided HIV and STI testing, completed a behavioral survey and a sex partner inventory, and provided place of residence for geocoding. HIV prevalence was higher among black (43%) versus white (13% MSM (prevalence ratio (PR) 3.3, 95% confidence interval (CI): 2.5-4.4). Among HIV-positive men, the median CD4 count was significantly lower for black (490 cells/µL) than white (577 cells/µL) MSM; there was no difference in the HIV RNA viral load by race. Black men were younger, more likely to be bisexual and unemployed, had less educational attainment, and reported fewer male sex partners, fewer unprotected anal sex partners, and less non-injection drug use. Black MSM were significantly more likely than white MSM to have rectal chlamydia and gonorrhea, were more likely to have racially concordant partnerships, more likely to have casual (one-time) partners, and less likely to discuss serostatus with partners. The census tracts where black MSM lived had higher rates of poverty and unemployment, and lower median income. They also had lower proportions of male-male households, lower male to female sex ratios, and lower HIV diagnosis rates.Among black and white MSM in Atlanta, disparities in HIV and STI prevalence by race are comparable to those observed nationally. We identified differences between black and white MSM at the individual, dyadic/sexual network, and community levels. The reasons for black/white disparities in HIV prevalence in Atlanta are complex, and will likely require a multilevel framework to understand comprehensively.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The increasing burden of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV and syphilis among male sex workers (MSWs) is a major global concern. The aim of our study was to evaluate the difference between MSWs and non-commercial MSMs in China. METHODS:During 2008-09, in a cross-sectional study, 2618 adult MSM were recruited through respondent-driven and snowball sampling from seven cities of China. Information regarding socio-demographics, risk behaviors, HIV-related knowledge and STI-related symptoms were collected and participants were tested for HIV and syphilis. RESULTS:Among 2618 participating MSM, 9.97% sold sex to males. HIV prevalence was 7.45% (6.13% among MSWs and 7.59% among non-MSW MSM) and syphilis prevalence was 14.32% (10.73% for MSWs and 14.72% for non-MSW MSM). Compared to non-MSW MSM, MSWs were more likely to be younger (adjusted odds ratio: aOR = 0.91, 95% confidence interval: 95%CI=0.88-0.93), never married (aOR = 4.38, 95% CI = 2.38-6.80), less educated, heterosexual (aOR = 13.04, 95% CI = 6.08-27.95), less knowledgeable regarding HIV (aOR = 0.70, 95% CI=0.51-0.96), experiencing symptoms of STI (aOR = 2.16, 95% CI = 1.47-3.19), engaging in condomless vaginal intercourse (aOR = 2.16, 95% CI = 1.47-3.19) and less likely to engage in condomless anal intercourse (aOR = 0.62, 95% CI = 0.46-0.85). CONCLUSIONS:High HIV and syphilis prevalence warranted urgent intervention targeting MSWs as a separate sentinel group for efficient surveillance owing to their different distribution from non-MSW MSM. Although male sex workers and non-commercial homosexuals have similar rates of HIV and syphilis, MSWs have different characteristics which should be considered in designing intervention programs targeting them.
Project description:BACKGROUND:In the United States, young cisgender men who have sex with men (YMSM), young transgender women (YTW), and gender nonconforming (GNC) youth face elevated rates of HIV infection. However, racial and ethnic disparities in adolescent HIV infection cannot be attributed to individual-level factors alone and are situated within larger social and structural contexts that marginalize and predispose sexual and gender minority youth of color to HIV. Addressing broader ecological factors that drive transmission requires interventions that focus on the distal drivers of HIV infection, including violence exposure, housing, food insecurity, educational attainment, and employment. Given the ways that economic instability may make YMSM, YTW, and GNC youth of color vulnerable to HIV exposure, this study focuses on employment as an HIV prevention intervention. More specifically, the intervention, called Work2Prevent (W2P), targets economic stability through job readiness and employment as a means of preventing behaviors and factors associated with adolescent and young adult HIV, such as transactional sex work and homelessness. The intervention was adapted from iFOUR, an evidence-based employment program for HIV-positive adults in phase 1 of this study, and pilot tested in a university-based setting in phase 2. OBJECTIVE:This paper aims to describe the protocol for the community-based test phase of W2P. The purpose of this phase was to pilot test a tailored, theoretically informed employment intervention program among YMSM, YTW, and GNC youth of color within a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) community setting. METHODS:The employment intervention was pilot tested using a single-arm pretest-posttest trial design implemented among a sample of vulnerable YMSM, YTW, and GNC youth of color using services within a community-based LGBTQ center. Assessments will examine intervention feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary estimates of efficacy. RESULTS:Phase 3 of W2P research activities began in May 2019 and was completed in December 2019. Overall, 41 participants were enrolled in the community-based pilot. CONCLUSIONS:This study will assess intervention feasibility and acceptability in the target populations and determine preliminary efficacy of the intervention to increase employment and reduce vulnerability to HIV when implemented in a community-based setting serving LGBTQ youth of color. Testing the intervention in a community setting is an opportunity to evaluate how recruitment, retention, and other outcomes are impacted by delivery in a venue akin to where this intervention could eventually be used by nonresearchers. If W2P demonstrates feasibility and acceptability, a larger multisite trial implemented in multiple community settings serving YMSM, YTW, and GNC youth of color is planned. TRIAL REGISTRATION:ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03313310; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03313310. INTERNATIONAL REGISTERED REPORT IDENTIFIER (IRRID):DERR1-10.2196/18051.
Project description:PURPOSE:To investigate factors associated with job loss and early retirement in men diagnosed with prostate cancer (PCa) 18-42 months previously. METHODS:Men ??60 years at diagnosis who completed the Life After Prostate Cancer Diagnosis (LAPCD) survey were identified. Men who moved from employment at diagnosis to unemployment (EtoU) or retirement (EtoR) at survey (18-42 months post-diagnosis) were compared to men remaining in employment (EtoE). Sociodemographic, clinical and patient-reported factors were analysed in univariable and multivariable analysis. RESULTS:There were 3218 men (81.4%) in the EtoE, 245 (6.2%) in EtoU and 450 (11.4%) in the EtoR groups. Men with stage IV disease (OR?=?4.7 95% CI 3.1-7.0, relative to stage I/II) and reporting moderate/big bowel (OR?=?2.5, 95% CI 1.6-3.9) or urinary problems (OR?=?2.0, 95% CI 1.4-3.0) had greater odds of becoming unemployed. Other clinical (??1 comorbidities, symptomatic at diagnosis) and sociodemographic (higher deprivation, divorced/separated), living in Scotland or Northern Ireland (NI)) factors were predictors of becoming unemployed. Men who were older, from NI, with stage IV disease and with caring responsibilities had greater odds of retiring early. Self-employed and non-white men had lesser odds of retiring early. CONCLUSION:PCa survivors who retire early following diagnosis do not report worse urinary or bowel problems compared to men remaining in employment. However, we identified clinical and sociodemographic factors which increased unemployment risk in PCa survivors. IMPLICATIONS FOR CANCER SURVIVORS:Targeted support and engagement with PCa survivors at risk of unemployment, including their families and employers, is needed.
Project description:BACKGROUND:The intentional use of drugs to have sex-chemsex-among men who have sex with men (MSM) might contribute to the high sexually transmitted infections (STI) prevalence in this group. Limited data is available on chemsex outside major cities. The current study investigated the use of a wide variety of drugs during sex among MSM living outside major cities in the Netherlands and their associations with STI. METHODS:In 2018, 350 MSM were recruited at STI clinics and 250 MSM completed an online questionnaire. Questionnaire data were linked to clients' most recent STI laboratory test results. Chemsex was defined as using cocaine, crystal meth, designer drugs, GHB/GBL, ketamine, speed, or XTC/MDMA during sex in the preceding six months. The use of other drugs was also assessed. Determinants (chemsex, specific drugs, number of drugs, combining, and frequency) potentially associated with STI were assessed using multivariable logistic regression analyses adjusting for sociodemographic characteristics and sexual history. RESULTS:Chemsex was reported by 35% (95%CI: 29-41) of the 250 participants. XTC/MDMA (27%; 68/250) and GHB/GBL (26%; 64/250) were the most used drugs. STI positivity was 33% (29/87) in MSM engaging in chemsex and 12% (12/163) in MSM not engaging in chemsex (p<0.001). Half of MSM engaging in chemsex (45/87) used three of more different chemsex drugs; STI positivity in this group was 44% (20/45). The only factor independently associated with STI was the use of three or more chemsex drugs (aOR: 4.13, 95%CI: 1.77-9.62). CONCLUSION:This study shows that chemsex is prevalent among MSM visiting the STI clinic outside major cities in the Netherlands, suggesting that health services in both urban and non-urban areas should be aware of and informed on chemsex. MSM who used multiple drugs are at particular risk for STI, indicating a special need for STI prevention and care in this group.