Characteristics of clients accessing HIV counseling and testing services in a tertiary hospital in Sagamu, Southwestern Nigeria
AbstractIntroduction: Client-initiated HIV testing and counseling has helped millions of people learn their HIV status. Nevertheless, global coverage of HIV testing and counseling programs remains low. This study describes the characteristics of clients who accessed HIV counseling and testing (HCT) services in Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, (OOUTH)
Materials and Methods: A retrospective study of the clients accessing HCT services in OOUTH. Data was collected from clients using a client intake form. Pre-test counseling, HIV screening and post-test counseling were carried out. Informed consent and confidentiality were ensured. Data obtained were analyzed using SPSS 10.0.
Results: A total of 2607 clients accessed our HCT services between May 1st 2008 and April 30th 2010. The clients were between the ages of 1 year and 90 years. The mean age was 33.3 ± 15.26. The median age was found to be 32.0 years, with the modal age being 30.0 years. 73.7% (1828) were non-reactive (negative result), 25.9% (643) were reactive (positive result), while 0.3% (8) were indeterminate. Among the reactive results, 9.3% (242) were males while 15.1% (394) were females.
Conclusion: A fair uptake of HCT services was noted. More females accessed services than males. More positive results were seen among females than males (P<0.05).
Recommendations: Upscale of HCT services to involve Sexually transmitted infections clinics and free-standing, client-initiated testing centers is necessary. Continuous AIDS education and risk reduction should be promoted.