Factors associated with unsafe sex among Kenyan youth: Results from a nationally representative population-based survey

MARY MWANGI (1) , ANTHONY WARURU1 (2) , WANJIRU WARUIRU (3) , ANTHONY GICHANGI (4) , CATHY TOROITICH-RUTO (5) , ANDREA A. KIM (6)
(1) , Kenya
(2) Divison of Global HIV/AIDS, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nairobi, Kenya , Kenya
(3) Institute for Global Health Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, California, United States of America , United States
(4) Divison of Global HIV/AIDS, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nairobi, Kenya , Kenya
(5) Divison of Global HIV/AIDS, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nairobi, Kenya , Kenya
(6) Divison of Global HIV/AIDS, US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Nairobi, Kenya , Kenya

Abstract

BACKGROUND


Understanding sexual risk among youth can inform the design of effective HIV prevention interventions.


METHODS


The 2012 Kenya AIDS Indicator Survey was a nationally representative population-based survey. We administered a questionnaire and collected blood samples for HIV testing. We examined factors associated with unsafe sex among unmarried youth aged 15-19 and 20-24 years.


RESULTS


Of 2,090 unmarried youth aged 15-19 years, 33.3% (95% confidence interval [CI] 30.6-36.1) had ever had sex. Among those, 66.0% (95% CI 61.3-70.7) had sex in the past year (sexually active), and of these, 38.7% (95% 33.4 – 44.0) reported unsafe sex. No differences were observed in unsafe sex by sex. Factors associated with increased adjusted odds of unsafe sex among youth aged 15-19 years were residence in Central province; having primary or lower education; sexual debut before age 15 years; ever receiving money, gifts or favours for sex (transactional sex); multiple sexual partners in the past year; and low self-perceived risk of HIV. Of the 1,079 unmarried youth aged 20-24 years, 77.2% (95% CI 74.2-80.2) had ever had sex. Of these, 73.1% (95% CI 69.8-76.3) were sexually active, and 24.1% (95% CI 18.1-30.1) of women and 31.9% (95% CI 26.4-37.5) of men reported unsafe sex in the past year. Factors associated with increased adjusted odds of unsafe sex among youth aged 20-24 years were primary or lower education, transactional sex and multiple partners in the past year.


CONCLUSION


Unsafe sex is common among Kenyan youth, especially those aged 15-19 years. HIV prevention efforts need to target youth, support educational progression and economic empowerment.

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Authors

MARY MWANGI
hoh7@cdc.gov (Primary Contact)
ANTHONY WARURU1
WANJIRU WARUIRU
ANTHONY GICHANGI
CATHY TOROITICH-RUTO
ANDREA A. KIM
MWANGI, M. ., WARURU1, A., WARUIRU, W., GICHANGI, A., TOROITICH-RUTO, C., & KIM, A. A. (2018). Factors associated with unsafe sex among Kenyan youth: : Results from a nationally representative population-based survey. Eajahme, 2(2). https://doi.org/10.58498/eajahme.v1i1.12
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