Forced sexual intercourse and its association with HIV status among people attending HIV Voluntary Counseling and Testing in a healthcare center in Kinshasa (DRC)
Sexual violence, an HIV determinant, is an integrated behavior in the D.R.Congo. We aimed to analyze the prevalence of forced sexual intercourse (FSI) among people receiving HIV Voluntary Counseling and Testing in a hospital in Kinshasa, and its association with socio-demographics, behaviors and HIV status.
Case-control study (2010¿2012). Two-hundred and seventy-four cases with a new HIV+ test and 1,340 controls with an HIV- test were interviewed about HIV-related knowledge, attitudes and behaviors, including FSI.
Thirty-four percent of the participants declared having had FSI (38% of women and 32% of men). Being a woman, aged 25¿49 and reporting multiple sexual partners were associated with reporting FSI. For men, being single was protective against FSI; and cohabiting, having a high socioeconomic status, and alcohol consumption increased the odds. For women, being single, divorced/separated and widow was associated with reporting FSI. A significant positive association was found between FSI and an HIV positive test.
Among our Congolese population, FSI was strongly associated with HIV infection and it was also associated with alcohol consumption and multiple sexual partnerships, other key HIV determinants. These behaviors need to be identified as potential risk factors of FSI during counseling interventions. Researchers, practitioners and decision-makers should work together to get violence prevention integrated into health, social and educational policies.