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High Mobility and HIV Prevalence Among Female Market Traders in East Africa in 2014.

  • Author(s): Camlin, Carol S
  • El Ayadi, Alison M
  • Kwena, Zachary A
  • McFarland, Willi
  • Johnson, Mallory O
  • Neilands, Torsten B
  • Bukusi, Elizabeth A
  • Cohen, Craig R
  • et al.
Abstract

Background

The contribution of women's mobility to the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Africa is poorly understood, despite women's high mobility and evidence that it is associated with higher-risk sexual behavior. We sought to measure levels of mobility, HIV prevalence, and related risk behaviors among female traders in Kisumu, Kenya.

Methods

We used global positioning system mapping to develop a probability-based sample and recruited 305 female market traders for participation in a survey and voluntary HIV counseling and testing in 2014. We estimated HIV prevalence and fitted logistic regression models to measure associations between mobility, risk behaviors, and HIV infection.

Results

HIV prevalence was 25.6% (95% confidence interval: 21.0 to 30.8); 11.5% had migrated (changed residence, over county, or national boundary) in the past year and 39.3% in the past 5 years. More than one-third (38.3%) spent nights away from main residence in the past month, with 11.4% spending more than a week away. Multiple partners were reported by 13.1% of women in the last year; 16% of married women reported a concurrent partnership. Mobility was not significantly associated with HIV prevalence, although recent short-term mobility was significantly correlated with higher numbers of sexual partners in the past year.

Conclusions

Female market traders were highly mobile, and HIV prevalence among traders was higher than in the general population of women of reproductive age in Kisumu (15.3% in 2013), and Nyanza Province, Kenya (16.1% in 2012). High HIV prevalence and risk behavior among women in this study warrant accelerated attention to HIV prevention and care needs of mobile women, including market traders.

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