College of Psychology: Faculty Articles

Title

Routine testing for HIV: the intersection between recommendations versus practice

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2-2006

Publication Title

AIDS Patient Care and STDs

ISSN

1087-2914

Volume

20

Issue/No.

2

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine the current practices of family practice (FP) providers and their allied staff with regard to routine HIV testing in Rhode Island (RI) and Mississippi (MS). Anonymous experimenter-derived surveys were mailed to both groups of providers in 2002. The questionnaire contained five questions about their current practices and attitudes toward HIV testingas well as patient demographics. Five hundred twenty-one questionnaires were sent to American Academy of Family Practitioners (AAFP) members in RI and MS and to FPs with listings in the phone book in RI. The response rate was 52% in RI and 41% in MS. The vast majority of providers (93%)tested their high-risk patients for HIV, but less tested pregnant (57%) and other sexually active (37%) patients. The FPs in this survey wanted HIV testing to be done in the primary care setting, yet only 7%recommended HIV testing to their sexually active patients aged 18–50 in the previous year. In order not to stigmatize any specific risk group, nor to miss any patients who are unable to be identified as being "at high risk," routine testing in the primary care setting should be encouraged.

DOI

10.1089/apc.2006.20.79