Factors influencing disclosure of HIV positive status in Mityana district of Uganda

Afr Health Sci. 2009 Mar;9(1):26-33.


Background: Disclosure of HIV positive sero-status to sexual partners, friends or relatives is useful for prevention and care. Identifying factors associated with disclosure is a research priority as a high proportion of persons living with HIV/AIDS (PHA) never disclose.

Objective: To identify factors associated with disclosure among PHAs in Mityana district of Uganda.

Methods: Using a case control design, we compared 139 PHAs who had disclosed to 139 PHA who had not disclosed regarding socio demographic characteristics, sexual behaviour, individual experiences and perceptions about disclosure, as well as on health facility/community correlates of disclosure.

Results: The independent factors that favour disclosure are not fearing negative outcomes of disclosure adjusted odds ratio (AOR) 7.00, 95 % confidence interval (95% CI) 3.03-16.95, having communication skills to disclose (AOR 12.08, 95% CI 4.94-29.51), having initiated anti-retroviral therapy (AOR 7.51, 95% CI 3.42-16.49), not having tested for HIV during ante-natal clinic (AOR 5.07, 95% CI 1.95-13.10), receiving ongoing counselling (AOR 4.33, 95% CI 1.50-12.51) and having ever seen a PHA publicly disclose his/her HIV status AOR 2.73, 95% CI 1.24-6.02).

Conclusions: PHAs that have not initiated anti-retroviral therapy (ART), test for HIV in ante-natal clinic and fear negative outcomes need more help in disclosure. Measures that empower PHA to disclose such as those that lead to improved communication skills should be reinforced during ongoing counselling.

Keywords: Disclosure of HIV positive status; HAART; HIV care; HIV counselling and testing; HIV/AIDS; Voluntary counselling and testing; communication skills; disclosure; ongoing counselling.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Communication
  • Counseling*
  • Decision Making
  • Female
  • HIV Seropositivity / diagnosis
  • HIV Seropositivity / psychology*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sex Factors
  • Sexual Behavior
  • Sexual Partners / psychology*
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Truth Disclosure*
  • Uganda
  • Young Adult