Study: HIV detection varies by method

NEW YORK, Aug. 10 (UPI) -- The odds of effectively detecting HIV in African-American men vary by, depending on the testing method used, U.S. researchers found.

Researchers at New York University, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Harlem United Community AIDS Center say a 2008 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report showed men who have sex with men accounted for more than 50 percent of new HIV cases and African-Americans comprised 74 percent of new infections.


Overall, among African-Americans, approximately half of new infections were among men having sex with men. In New York City, African-American men having sex with men accounted for 38 percent of the new HIV diagnoses, the researchers say.

The researchers tracked HIV testing using three methods:

-- Partner services, which involves identifying, locating, and interviewing HIV-infected persons to provide names and contact information of their sex and needle-sharing partners, notifying partners of their exposure to HIV, and providing HIV counseling, testing, and referral services to those partners.

-- Alternative venue testing, rapid HIV testing is conducted in bars, churches, or mobile units.

-- Social networks strategy, where HIV testers engage either HIV-positive individuals or those at high risk to get tested.


The study, published in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine, finds alternative venue testing showed a rate of 6.3 percent, much lower than the rates for the social networks strategy of 19.3 percent and partner services at 14.3 percent.

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