Half of men who subscribe to prostitution may be infected with HIV

Suara.com – Terrible news for those of you who like to snack outside. A study conducted in Africa showed, 1 in 10 African men who subscribe to prostitution, may have been infected with HIV.

This study was conducted by a team from the University of Montreal Canada and Imperial College London, in which 50 percent of male users of commercial sex workers (CSWs) may be HIV positive in comparison to those who do not subscribe to CSWs.

Researchers are concerned that this group of men, although vulnerable to HIV infection, are not yet formally included in the list of groups of people with high risk behavior for HIV infection, and are not included in the priority group for HIV prevention.

This threatens not only the male partner who is a prostitute, but also the prostitutes themselves.

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Not only does it need to be included in the group that must be prevented, the researchers also say there must be a stronger way to find complete data on the number of CSWs subscribers in Africa.

An examination of data from 87 surveys in Africa during 2000 and 2020 also revealed that among male sex workers, only 62 percent admitted to using condoms.

In addition, it is known that men who use CSWs are more likely to have had an HIV test in the last 12 months than those who are not regular CSWs.

Those living in urban areas were also more likely to pay for CSW than those living in slums over the past 12 months, and young men (15-24 years) were more likely to pay for CSWs than older people.

Writing for the journal PLOS One, lead investigator and epidemiologist Dr Mathieu Maheu-Girox, blamed it all on the failure to recognize client sex workers as a key population group vulnerable to HIV infection.

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He said developing appropriate interventions for users of sex workers can be challenging, and requires an understanding of sexual behavior, HIV epidemiology, and the application of HIV prevention interventions from these groups.

“Like other key populations, the clientele of sex workers is difficult to reach, and definitions of sex workers can vary widely. Nationally representative population-based surveys that collect information on paid sex could provide a promising alternative for characterizing men who pay for sex.”

“Men who pay for sex often also have partners who are not engaged in sex work, they may contribute disproportionately to population-level HIV transmission if the virus is not suppressed.”

“Condom use initiatives and increased access to HIV testing campaigns are urgently needed to prevent HIV transmission from clients to sex workers and their other sexual partners,” the researchers noted, quoted from Sowetan Live.