Objectives and goal: The objectives of this study were to measure the potential acceptability of a hypothetical microbicide among women in sex establishments in rural areas of Southern China and demographic, behavioral, and social context factors likely to affect microbicide acceptability.
Study design: This was a cross-sectional survey, using a quota sampling, among 300 women from sex establishments in 3 rural towns. An interviewer-administered standardized questionnaire was used to measure the acceptability score of hypothetical microbicides' characteristics, as well as sexual relationships and behaviors and other contextual factors.
Results: Findings showed a generally positive response to microbicides, indicated by an acceptability index score of 2.89 (SD, 0.56, scale of 1-4) in the overall sample. Multivariate analysis shows that the acceptability score varied significantly by study sites, type of sex-work establishments, marital status, sex partner type, vaginal product experience, locus of control by partners, and locus of control by chance.
Conclusions: Microbicides may be acceptable among sex workers in rural settings in China; however, contextual factors should be carefully considered in education and promotion of microbicides in the future.