Journal Article

Protecting Oneself from Human Immunodeficiency Virus: Are Prevention Messages Being Heard?

David C. Bell, Victoria Mosier and John S. Atkinson

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 37, issue Supplement_5, pages S433-S438
Published in print December 2003 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online December 2003 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/377544
Protecting Oneself from Human Immunodeficiency Virus: Are Prevention Messages Being Heard?

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The transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and other communicable diseases is socially organized. Public health attempts to reduce HIV transmission have admonished persons to reduce their risks—in effect, to act as if their partners are or could be HIV-seropositive. Therefore, a good test of the effectiveness of public health messages is to compare the riskiness of behaviors among HIV-seronegative persons with the riskiness of the behavior of serodiscordant partners. Data were collected for a network study of 267 drug users and nonusers in an urban inner city. Results show that in most of the domains studied, persons with HIV-seronegative partners engaged in less risky behavior than did persons whose partners were HIV-seropositive. This result suggests that risk reduction messages have been relatively successful in convincing most persons to treat their partner as if he or she were HIV-seropositive.

Journal Article.  4280 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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