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AIDS Behav. 2019 Jan 8. doi: 10.1007/s10461-019-02391-1. [Epub ahead of print]

A Multilevel Analysis of Social Network Characteristics and Technology Use on HIV Risk and Protective Behaviors Among Transgender Women.

Author information

1
Friends Research Institute, Inc., 1419 N. La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90028, USA. reback@friendsresearch.org.
2
David Geffen School of Medicine, Semel Institute of Neuroscience and Human Behavior, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, 90024, USA. reback@friendsresearch.org.
3
Center for HIV Identification, Prevention and Treatment Services, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, 90024, USA. reback@friendsresearch.org.
4
Department of Epidemiology, Fielding School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, 90095, USA.
5
Friends Research Institute, Inc., 1419 N. La Brea Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90028, USA.
6
Department of Social Welfare, Luskin School of Public Affairs, University of California, Los Angeles, CA, 90095, USA.

Abstract

This study examined the empirical structure (i.e., size, density, duration) of transgender women's social networks and estimated how network alters' perceived HIV risk/protective behaviors influenced transgender women's own HIV risk/protective behaviors. From July 2015 to September 2016, 271 transgender women completed surveys on sociodemographic characteristics, HIV risk/protective behaviors, and social networks. Hierarchical generalized linear models examined the associations of social network alter member data 'nested' within participant data. Analyses revealed that social network factors were associated with HIV risk/protective behaviors, and that the gender identity of the alters (cisgender vs. transgender), and social network sites and technology use patterns ("SNS/tech") moderated these associations. Among network alters with whom the participant communicated via SNS/tech, participants' HIV risk behavior was positively associated with alters' HIV risk behavior (cisgender alters aOR 4.10; transgender alters aOR 5.87). Among cisgender alters (but not transgender alters) with whom the participant communicated via SNS/tech, participants' HIV protective behavior was positively associated with alters' HIV protective behavior (aOR 8.94).

KEYWORDS:

HIV; Social networks; Technology; Transgender

PMID:
30617525
DOI:
10.1007/s10461-019-02391-1

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