Trends and determinants of condom use in Uganda
Background: Condom use is an integral indicator of risky sexual behaviour and, as a result, is a potential predictor of future HIV infection rates. Consequently, documenting trends in condom use and exploring the factors associated with their utilisation are important for broadening the information base for the design of HIV intervention programmes. This paper aims to document Uganda’s nationwide trends in condom use from 1995 to 2006 and seeks to understand some of the socio-demographic variables that may be associated with their use, using Uganda Demographic Health Surveys (UDHS).
Method: Data from the Uganda Demographic Health Surveys (UDHS) conducted in 1995, 2000/2001 and 2006 were analysed. Sociodemographic variables as well as ‘Year of the survey’ were selected to assess their interaction with condom use. Multivariate regression analyses were performed. Odds Ratios and Confidence Intervals were computed.
Results: Certain socio-demographic factors such as being male and living in an urban setting are significantly associated with an increased likelihood of using condoms than others. All results indicate a far greater increase in condom use between 1995 and 2000/2001 compared to the rate of increase in condom use from 2000/2001 to 2006.
Conclusion: Policies need to address the lowered use of condoms amongst women and rural populations. The wane in increase in condom use between 2000/2001 and 2006 may be the result of interrupted distribution of condoms between 2004 and 2006. However, this may also be due to the large-scale influx of antiretrovirals (starting in 2004) which may be lowering the anxiety associated with the social construct of HIV/AIDS. Policy makers are urged to intensify condom use campaigns.
Keywords: Antiretroviral, ARV, condom, DHS, HIV, PEPFAR, sexual behaviour, disinhibition, inhibition, Uganda