Bishwajit Ghose

Understanding the factors associated with HIV and STIs diagnosis among Black heterosexual men in Ottawa and Windsor, Ontario 


Background: The African, Caribbean and Black (ACB) men living in Canada share a heightened risk of infection by Human Immunodeficiency Virus and other sexually transmitted illnesses (STIs) and the associated risky behaviours such as suboptimal use of family planning services such as condom use. The African, Caribbean and Black (ACB) heterosexual men living in Canada are disproportionately exposed to HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. The present paper aims to assess the relationship between knowledge, attitude and use of condom with diagnosis of HIV and STIs among ACB heterosexual men in Ontario.

Design and methods: This was a cross-sectional study on 430 participants consisting of black heterosexual men living two communities, Ottawa and Windsor in Ontario. The outcome variables were ever being diagnosed with HIV (Yes/No) and other STIs (Yes/No). Data were analysed using descriptive, and logistic regression techniques.

Results: Findings indicated that 70.20% did not have good knowledge of HIV, 68.10% had positive attitude towards condom use, and 62.82% were not regular condom user. Men who reported experiencing difficulty in accessing healthcare services had significantly higher odds of reporting HIV and STI diagnosis. Men with positive attitude towards condom use had lower odds of both HIV (odds ratio= 0.48, 95%CI=0.30,0.76) and STI diagnosis (odds ratio= 0.27, 95%CI=0.08,0.90). Similarly, condom users also had lower odds of both HIV and (odds ratio= 0.21, 95%CI=0.09,0.49) STI diagnosis (odds ratio= 0.62, 95%CI=0.39,0.99).

Conclusions: A large proportion of the sample with positive attitude to condom use was not a reflection of the large sample who did not have correct knowledge of HIV. Several factors were also found to be associated with heightened odds of being diagnosed with HIV and other STIs. The most notable of these factors were experiences of difficulty in accessing healthcare and utilisation of condoms.