HIV/AIDS among Adolescents in Urban Informal Settlements in Kenya: What Predicts the Likelihood of HIV Testing?

Caroline Kabiru, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)
Joanna Crichton, African Population and Health Research Center (APHRC)

Adolescents’ sexual behaviors place them at a high risk of acquiring HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. The high incidence of HIV/AIDS among young people has stimulated research and programmatic efforts to address adolescent sexual health. However, HIV testing and its determinants are largely understudied among adolescents. Yet, HIV counseling and testing is widely considered an important and cost-effective component of HIV prevention and treatment. In this paper we draw on data collected from adolescents living in informal (slum) settlements in Nairobi to examine HIV testing behavior and the correlates of HIV testing. We investigate differences among adolescents who request for an HIV test, those who are offered the test, those required to take a test, and those who have never been tested. Through the lens of the health belief model, we also explore reasons why adolescents get tested, and conversely, for those who have never been tested, why not.

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Presented in Poster Session 5