HIV Risk Behaviors Among Latina Women Tested for HIV in Florida by Country of Birth, 2012


Latina women in the United States (US) are disproportionately affected by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection. Data are limited on the risk differences in HIV among Latinas by country of birth. This paper describes the risk behaviors among Latina women tested for HIV at public sites in Florida. Multivariate logistic regression was used to assess the demographic characteristics associated with the report of specific risk behaviors. Results indicate that foreign-born Latina women were 54 % less likely to report partner risk [95 % confidence interval (CI) 0.40, 0.54] than US-born Latina women. Reported risk behaviors varied by race/ethnicity, US-born versus foreign-born status, and by Latina country of origin. Knowledge of these differences can aid in targeting HIV prevention messaging, program decision-making, and allocation of resources, corresponding to the central approach of High Impact Prevention and the National HIV/AIDS Strategy.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  1. 1.

    Institute of Medicine (US) Committee on Health and Behavior: Research, Practice, and Policy. Individuals and families: models and interventions. In: Health and behavior: the interplay of biological, behavioral and societal influences. Washington: National Academies Press; 2001. p. 183.

  2. 2.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Estimated HIV incidence in the United States, 2007–2010. HIV Surveillance Supplemental Report 2012; 17 (No. 4). Published December 2012.

  3. 3.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): HIV among Hispanics/Latinos in the United States and dependent areas (2013). Retrieved 17 Jan 2014, from

  4. 4.

    Marin BV. HIV prevention in the Hispanic community: sex, culture, and empowerment. J Transcult Nurs. 2003;14(3):186.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  5. 5.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). (2008). HIV counseling and testing among Hispanic adolescents and adults in the United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, 2005. Divisions of HIV/AIDS Prevention National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention.

  6. 6.

    Gonzalez-Guarda RM, Vasquez EP, Urrutia MT, Villarruel AM, Peragallo N. Hispanic women’s experiences with substance abuse, intimate partner violence, and risk for HIV. J Transcult Nurs. 2011;22(1):46–54.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  7. 7.

    Brown N, Taylor E, Mulatu M, Scott W. Demographic correlates of HIV testing, high-risk behaviors, and Condom/STD consultation among a multi-ethnic sample of women. Women Health. 2007;46:59.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  8. 8.

    Chandra A, Billioux VG, Copen CE, Sionean C. HIV risk-related behaviors in the United States household population aged 15–44 years: data from the national survey of family growth, 2002 and 2006–2010. 2012. National Health Statistics Reports.

  9. 9.

    Kaiser Family Foundation. Latinos and HIV/AIDS. HIV/AIDS policy fact sheet. 2006. Retrieved, 2012, from

  10. 10.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). HIV/AIDS among Hispanics—United States, 2001–2005. MMWR 2007. 2007;56:1052–7.

    Google Scholar 

  11. 11.

    Grieco EM. Race and Hispanic origin of the foreign-born population in the United States: 2007, American Community Survey Reports, ACS-11, U.S. Census Bureau, Washington, DC; 2009.

  12. 12.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. HIV surveillance report, 2011; vol 23. Published February 2013. Accessed 2013.

  13. 13.

    Castillo-Mancilla J, Allshouse A, Collins C, Hastings-Tolsma M, Campbell TB, MaWhinney S. Differences in sexual risk behavior and HIV/AIDS risk factors among foreign-born and US-born Hispanic women. J Immigr Minor Health. 2012;14:89.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  14. 14.

    Rios-Ellis B, Frates J, D’Anna L, Dwyer M, Lopez-Zetina J, Ugarte C. Addressing the need for access to culturally and linguistically appropriate HIV/AIDS prevention for Latinos. J Immigr Minor Health. 2008;10:445.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  15. 15.

    Dixon D, Antoni M, Peters M, Saul J. Employment, social support, and HIV sexual-risk behavior in Puerto Rican women. AIDS Behav. 2001;5(4):331.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  16. 16.

    Dixon D, Peters M, Saul J. HIV sexual risk behavior among Puerto Rican women. Health Care Women Int. 2003;24(6):529.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  17. 17.

    Zambrana RE, Cornelius LJ, Boykin SS, Lopez DS. Latinas and HIV/AIDS risk factors: implications for harm reduction strategies. Am J Public Health. 2004;94(7):1152.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  18. 18.

    Moreno CL, Morrill AC, El-Bassel N. Sexual risk factors for HIV and violence among Puerto Rican women in New York City. Health Soc Work. 2011;36(2):87.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  19. 19.

    Espinoza L, Hall I, Hardnett F, Selik RM, Ling Q, Lee LM. Characteristics of persons with heterosexually acquired HIV infection, United States 1999–2004. Am J Public Health. 2007;97(1):144.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  20. 20.

    Wallace S, McLellan-Lemal E, Harris M, Townsend T, Miller K. Why take an HIV test? Concerns, benefits, and strategies to promote HIV testing among low-income heterosexual African American young adults. Health Educ Behav. 2011;38(5):462.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  21. 21.

    Blackstock OJ, King JR, Mason RD, Lee CC, Mannheimer SB. Evaluation of a rapid HIV testing initiative in an urban, hospital-based dental clinic. AIDS Patient Care STDs. 2010;24(12):781.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  22. 22.

    Bond L, Lauby J, Batson H. HIV testing and the role of individual- and structural-level barriers and facilitators. AIDS Care. 2005;17(2):125.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  23. 23.

    Djokic D, Englund J, Daum R, Martin R, Dozier T, Potts S, Marcinal J. HIV knowledge and attitudes toward HIV testing of south side Chicago housing authority residents. AIDS Patient Care STDs. 2009;23(1):23–8.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  24. 24.

    Renzi C, Zantedeschi E, Signorelli C, NEM Group. Voluntary HIV testing in Europe. Scand J Public Health. 2004;32(2):102.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  25. 25.

    Vargo S, Agronick G, O’Donnell L, Stueve A. Field action report. Using peer recruitment and OraSure to increase HIV testing. Am J Public Health. 2004;94(1):29–31.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  26. 26.

    Wiggers LC, De Wit JB, Gras MJ, Coutinho RA, Van Den Hoek A. Risk behavior and socio-cognitive determinants of condom use among ethnic minority communities in Amsterdam. AIDS Educ Prev. 2003;15(5):430–47.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  27. 27.

    Whyte JI. The measurement of HIV risk level in African American women who dwell in the southeastern United States. J Assoc Nurses AIDS Care. 2005;16(6):48–55.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  28. 28.

    Catania JA, Binson D, Dolcini MM, Stall R, Choi K, Pollack LM, Moskowitz JT. Risk factors for HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases and prevention practices among US heterosexual adults; changes from 1990 to 1992. Am J Public Health. 1995;85(11):1492–9.

    CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  29. 29.

    Bishop GD, Kok AJ, Chan RKW. Sexual practices among men attending an anonymous HIV testing site in Singapore. AIDS Care. 1998;Supplement 2:S167–78.

    Google Scholar 

  30. 30.

    Fitterling JM, Matens PB, Scotti JR, Allen JS. AIDS risk behaviors and knowledge among heterosexual alcoholics and non-injecting drug users. Addiction. 1993;88(9):1257–65.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  31. 31.

    Pathela P, Hajat A, Schillinger J, Blank S, Sell R, Mostashari F. Discordance between sexual behavior and self-reported sexual identity: a population-based survey of New York City men. Ann Intern Med. 2006;145(6):416–25.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  32. 32.

    Chirgwin K, DeHovitz JA, Dillon S, McCormack WM. HIV infection, genital ulcer disease, and crack cocaine use among patients attending a clinic for sexually transmitted diseases. Am J Public Health. 1991;81(12):1576–9.

    CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  33. 33.

    Hong N, Wolfe MI, Dat TT, McFarland DA, Lamb ML, Thang NT, Del Rio C. Utilization of HIV voluntary counseling and testing in Vietnam: An evaluation of 5 years of routine program data for national response. AIDS Educ Prev. 2011;23(3):30.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  34. 34.

    Susser E, Desvarieux M, Wittkowski KM. Reporting sexual risk behavior for HIV: a practical risk index and a method for improving risk indices. Am J Public Health. 1998;88(4):671–4.

    CAS  PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  35. 35.

    Kinsler J, Lee S, Sayles J, Newman PA, Diamant A, Cunninfham W. The impact of acculturation on utilization of HIV prevention services and access to care among an at-risk Hispanic population. J Health Care Poor Underserved. 2009;20:996–1011.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  36. 36.

    Vega MY, Klukas E, Valera E, Montenegro J. The state of Latinos in the deep south: being visible by piercing the stigma veil. New York: Latino Commission on AIDS; 2015.

    Google Scholar 

  37. 37.

    Florida Department of Health. HIV/AIDS among Minorities in Florida. 2013. Retrieved 2015, from

  38. 38.

    Cianelli R, Villegas N, Gonzalez-Guarda R, Kaelber L, Peragallo N. HIV susceptibility among Hispanic women in South Florida. J Community Health Nurs. 2010;27(4):207.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  39. 39.

    Abel E, Chambers K. Factors that influence vulnerability to STDs and HIV/AIDS among Hispanic women. Health Care Women Int. 2004;25:761.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  40. 40.

    Essien EJ, Meshack AF, Ross MW. Misperceptions about HIV transmission among heterosexual and African-American and Latino men and women. J Natl Med Assoc. 2002;94(5):304.

    PubMed  PubMed Central  Google Scholar 

  41. 41.

    Kang S, Deren S, Mino M, Cortes D. Biculturality and HIV-risk behaviors among Puerto Rican drug users in New York City. Subst Use Misuse. 2009;44:578.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  42. 42.

    Montealegre JR, Risser JM, Selwyn BJ, Sabin K, McCurdy SA. HIV testing behaviors among undocumented Central American immigrant women in Houston, Texas. J Immigr Minor Health. 2012;14(1):116.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  43. 43.

    Gimenez-Garcia C, Ballester-Arnal R, Gil-Llario MD, Cardenas-Lopez G, Duran-Baca X. Culture as an influence on the perceived risk of HIV infection: a differential analysis comparing young people from Mexico and Spain. J Community Health. 2013;38:434.

    PubMed  Google Scholar 

  44. 44.

    Office of National AIDS Policy. National HIV/AIDS strategy. 2010. Retrieved, 2011, from

  45. 45.

    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). High-impact HIV prevention: CDC’s approach to reducing HIV infections in the United States; 2011. Retrieved from

  46. 46.

    Florida Department of Health. Test and treat Latinos HIV/AIDS in Florida. 2011. Retrieved 2013, from

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Mary Jo Trepka.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Taveras, J., Trepka, M.J., Khan, H. et al. HIV Risk Behaviors Among Latina Women Tested for HIV in Florida by Country of Birth, 2012. J Immigrant Minority Health 18, 1104–1114 (2016).

Download citation


  • Latinas
  • Foreign-born
  • HIV
  • Risk behaviors
  • High Impact Prevention