HIV Testing Preferences Among MSM Members of an LGBT Community Organization in Los Angeles

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Abstract

Lack of regular HIV testing puts African American, Asian, and Latino men who have sex with men (MSM) at high risk for HIV infection. Rapid self-testing may be an effective option for these men. We explored acceptability, preferences, and usability of HIV self-test kits with MSM of color using semi-structured focus groups to discuss HIV testing history, reasons for testing, and self-testing preferences. Participants (n = 21) lived in Los Angeles, identified as MSM of color, and were 18-35 years of age. Discussions were audio-recorded, transcribed, and analyzed using grounded theory. Participants expressed needs for (a) accessibility, (b) privacy, (c) local support, and (d) access to testing professionals. Self-testing for HIV infection may be an effective method for high-risk MSM. Effective self-testing programs need to consider accessibility, confidentiality, and support to increase routine testing. Community-based organizations have an opportunity to increase HIV testing for MSM of color.

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