AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 17, Issue 8, pp 2588–2596

Determinants of HIV Infection Among Female Sex Workers in Two Cities in the Republic of Moldova: The Role of Injection Drug Use and Sexual Risk


  • Lev Zohrabyan
    • UNAIDS Regional Support Team
    • Global Health SciencesUniversity of California
    • Tulane University of International Public Health and Tropical Medicine
  • Otilia Scutelniciuc
    • UNAIDS Monitoring and Evaluation Adviser for Central Asia
  • Alexandrina Iovita
    • UNAIDS Country Office
  • Lilia Todirascu
    • National Center for Health Management
  • Tatiana Costin
    • National Center for Health Management
  • Valeriu Plesca
    • National Center for Health Management
  • Tatiana Cotelnic-Harea
    • National Center for Health Management
  • Gabriela Ionascu
    • UNAIDS Country Office
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10461-013-0460-x

Cite this article as:
Zohrabyan, L., Johnston, L.G., Scutelniciuc, O. et al. AIDS Behav (2013) 17: 2588. doi:10.1007/s10461-013-0460-x


In 2009–2010, females who reported having vaginal, anal or oral sex in exchange for money in the previous year, ≥16 years, and living in either Chisinau (n = 299) or Balti (n = 359), Moldova, were recruited into a respondent driven sampling survey. One fifth reported ever injecting drugs and over 30 % ever had sexual intercourse with men who inject drugs. In both cities, condom use with permanent and casual partners was much lower than condom use with commercial partners. In Chisinau, 6.9 % and in Balti, 24.7 % tested positive for HIV; 18 and 23.7 % had antibodies to hepatitis C; 9.1 and 8.9 % had antibodies to HBV; and, 8.4 and 6.1 % tested positive for syphilis. HIV seropositive FSW in either city were more likely to have ever injected drugs and to be infected with HCV. Limited government initiative and drastic reductions in international funding will likely impact urgently needed HIV prevention and harm reduction services targeting FSW in Moldova.


Female sex workersInjection drug useHIV/AIDSHepatitisMoldova

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013