, Volume 12, Issue 6, pp 875-881
Date: 27 Sep 2009

A Lifetime of Low-Risk Behaviors Among HIV-Positive Latinas in Los Angeles

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Abstract

The objective is to assess the differences in lifetime and current transmission risk behaviors of HIV-positive and HIV-negative Latinas. In 2005–2006, 214 HIV-positive Latinas were recruited from systems of care and 111 HIV-negative Latina-matched controls were interviewed in Los Angeles, CA regarding lifetime and recent sexual and drug-taking risk behaviors. Multivariate OLS regression and logistic regression models were used to assess differences in lifetime and current transmission risk. There was no significant difference between the two groups with respect to lifetime exposure through injection drug use. HIV-positive Latinas reported significantly more lifetime sexual partners than HIV-negative Latinas. Rates of current sexual activity were not significantly different across the two groups. HIV-positive Latinas were less likely to report recent unprotected sex relative to HIV-negative Latinas. In Los Angeles, HIV-positive and HIV-negative Latinas were very similar with respect to transmission risk. The challenges these findings pose to prevention efforts that target Latinas and suggestions for new interventions are discussed.