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Med Mal Infect. 2012 Nov;42(11):553-60. doi: 10.1016/j.medmal.2012.08.005. Epub 2012 Sep 29.

Feasibility and acceptability of rapid HIV test screening (DEPIVIH) by French family physicians.

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Département de Médecine Générale, Université Paris Diderot, 16 rue Henri-Huchard, 75018 Paris, France.



In France, around 50,000 people were unaware of their HIV positivity at the end of 2008. The latest guidelines recommend routine screening of all adults. Family physicians have been identified as key persons for this new policy. Rapid HIV tests (RHT) have been proposed as an alternative to conventional blood tests.


The authors assessed the feasibility and acceptability of RHT test based screening in French community practice.


We made a prospective interventional study of the BioMerieux VIKIA(®) HIV 1/2 RHT among French family physicians. Data on the RHT was posted in the physician's waiting room.


Sixty-two French physicians, mostly family practitioners, included 383 patients with a mean age of 36.2 years, from June to October 2010. Twenty-two percent (83) of these patients had never been tested for HIV. The RHT was proposed and 382 tests were accepted and performed (acceptability rate of 99.7%). Sixty-five percent of the tests were made on the patient's request. The tested population represented 1.5% of consulting patients during the study period (feasibility rate). Patients were quite satisfied but physicians less so. Test steps and capillary blood sampling were the main source of difficulty mentioned. At the end of the study, 59% of physicians were ready to continue using RHT in their daily practice.


Routine RHT screening in community practice is feasible and well accepted by patients. It was the first screening test for 22% of our patients. Its feasibility was limited by capillary blood sampling technique and time constraints during consultation.

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