Community HIV Prevalence and Parity Progression

Laurie DeRose, University of Maryland

The emergent literature on how HIV prevalence in the community affects fertility includes a wide array of mixed results, but is starting to favor the null hypothesis of no general effect on fertility. However, an overall zero effect can conceal radically different effects for women of different parities. More specifically, high HIV prevalence could delay first births by delaying the initiation of condomless sex, but it could speed the transition from the first birth to desired family size. Women who have already been exposed to risk of acquiring HIV sexually might be motivated to complete childbearing quickly future reproductive capacity is most uncertain. I estimate effects of community HIV prevalence on parity progression in 20 sub-Saharan African countries in random effects models and 15 countries in fixed effects models.

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Presented in Session 110: HIV/AIDS in Contemporary Africa