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PrEP awareness in men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women who sought services from the Allegheny County Health Department HIV/STD Clinic, 2016-2017

Roth, Harley (2018) PrEP awareness in men who have sex with men (MSM) and transgender women who sought services from the Allegheny County Health Department HIV/STD Clinic, 2016-2017. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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In 2016, the estimated total of new HIV infections was 39,782 in the United States. The majority of these cases occurred among men who have sex with men (MSM). In 2014, 74.6% of diagnosed HIV cases in Allegheny County were among MSM. 852 per 100,000 Black individuals were living with diagnosed HIV compared to 131 per 100,000 White individuals in 2014 for the county. In 2016, there were 127 new HIV cases diagnosed within the county. In 2012, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved Truvada to be used for HIV as pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP). This drug is an efficacious prevention method to protect from HIV infection. Previous research shows low awareness of PrEP in all MSM communities, particularly in Black MSM. Research also shows an association with higher levels of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV seroconversion and in the United States, MSM carry the burden for STIs as well. Therefore, it is a prominent public health issue and individuals seeking care for STIs need to become aware of PrEP. Awareness of PrEP is a first stepping stone into rolling out this new prevention measure and stopping new HIV cases from within the MSM population.
This study aims to provide insight into PrEP awareness in Allegheny County, PA among MSM, transgender women, and gender non-conforming individuals who were assigned a sex of male at birth seeking services at the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) HIV/STD clinic.
In 2016 and 2017, 191 MSM in Allegheny County, PA were surveyed at the ACHD HIV/STD clinic about their PrEP awareness. 84% of this population had heard about PrEP. Compared to 18-25-year-old individuals, those 55+ were significantly less likely to be aware of PrEP (aOR = 6.32; 95% CI: 1.13, 35.21). No other demographic was statistically significant in this analysis, including year survey was taken, self-reported perceived risk of HIV infection, gender, and sexual orientation.
Findings suggest that overall this population had a high level of PrEP awareness compared to past research. Future interventions should be focused on older age. More research is needed as PrEP awareness is just the beginning of PrEP implementation into a community. Further research should be done to assess PrEP adherence and long-term continuation, barriers and facilitators of PrEP uptake and use, and roles that HIV/STI clinics can serve in PrEP awareness and knowledge to further assist in reduction of new HIV cases within this population.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Roth, Harleyhdr6@pitt.eduhdr6
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairFriedman,
Committee MemberKrier,
Committee MemberEgan,
Date: 28 June 2018
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 20 April 2018
Approval Date: 28 June 2018
Submission Date: 5 April 2018
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 43
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Infectious Diseases and Microbiology
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: MSM, men who have sex with men, Allegheny County, PrEP, PrEP awareness, HIV, prevention, Transgender women, HIV clinic, STD clinic, STI clinic, HIV seroconversion
Date Deposited: 28 Jun 2018 19:46
Last Modified: 28 Jun 2018 19:46


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