Multi-level risk factors associated with sex trading among women living with HIV in Kazakhstan: A neglected key population

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Little is known about the prevalence and risk factors associated with sex trading among HIV-positive women. A total of 242 HIV-positive women were recruited in five regions in Kazakhstan. These women completed a survey containing items on socio-demographics, HIV stigma, intimate partner violence, and partner risk behaviors. Multivariate regression was used to examine associations between risk factors and sex trading after controlling for socio-demographic factors. Fifty-six (23.1%) women reported trading sex in the past 90 days. Women who reported recent sex trading were more likely than women who did not trade sex in the past 90 days to experience intimate partner violence (adjusted odds ratio [AOR]: 2.25; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.08–4.73), to have been homeless in the past 90 days (AOR: 4.12; 95% CI: 1.19–14.29), and to know or suspect a male partner had a sexually transmitted infection (AOR: 2.20; 95% CI: 1.07–4.53), had sex with another partner (AOR: 4.53; 95% CI: 2.25–9.14), or injected drugs in the past year (AOR: 3.31; 95% CI: 1.64–6.65). These findings underscore the need for comprehensive HIV prevention and intervention programs that address the multi-level risk factors associated with sex trading for women infected with HIV.

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