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Eval Health Prof. 2010 Jun;33(2):177-96. doi: 10.1177/0163278710361929. Epub 2010 May 10.

Who chooses a rapid test for HIV in Los Angeles County, California?

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  • 1Center for Behavioral Research and Services, California State University, Long Beach, CA 90813, USA.


The purpose of this study was to determine who chooses a rapid test for HIV when given a choice in a community-based or mobile van setting in Long Beach, California. Individuals were given a choice of either rapid or standard HIV testing either alone or in conjunction with testing for sexually transmitted diseases (STD). Of the 2,752 HIV tests performed between March 2005 and March 2009, 917 (33%) were rapid tests. Preference for rapid HIV testing was among men who have sex with men (MSM), who reported using alcohol in the last 48 hr but who did not endorse the use of illicit drugs; individuals reporting sex trading were also more likely to choose the rapid HIV test. African Americans, regardless of sexual identification, were significantly less likely to choose an HIV rapid test. Strategies are needed to encourage HIV rapid testing among both noninjection and injection drug users, and other at-risk groups.

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