Application of Integrated Behavioral Model (IBM) to measure intention to get early screening and treatment of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) among HIV at- risk sub-populations in Ethiopia
Background: Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) increase the risk of contracting Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Hence, early screening and treatment of STIs as a behavioral practice will reduce the odds of HIV infection among at risk and vulnerable sub-populations. To that end, HIV prevention strategies need to design evidence-based interventions using behavioral models or theories to help at-risk individuals adopt early screening and treatment of STI as preventive health behavior. In this study, commercial sex workers were considered as HIV at-risk sub-populations.
Objective: Measuring to what extent that Integrated Behavioral Model constructs explain individuals’ intention to practice early screening and treatment of sexually transmitted infections as healthy behavior of interest in HIV prevention.
Design: Integrated Behavioral Model (IBM) measurement survey was conducted using Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) in six towns located in the main transport corridors of Ethiopia. Respondents’ answers to model construct-based questions and intention to practice the health behavior of interest were measured using Likert Scale. Analysis was done to assess the correlation and level of association of model construct-based questions with intention to practice the preventive health behavior.
Results: Respondents’ attitude explained 32%, perceived control 2%, normative influence 21%, and self-efficacy 53 % of their intention to get early screening and treatment of sexually transmitted infections.
Conclusion: Self-efficacy explained the variability of respondents’ intention to get early screening and treatment of STIs most, while perceived control was the least. Hence, HIV prevention behavioral interventions targeting early screening and treatment of STIs should give high emphasis to self-efficacy.
Keywords: Behavior; integrated behavioral model; sexually transmitted infections; human immunodeficiency virus.
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