Introduction: Sexually transmitted infections are among the most important public health problems in the world. People who indulge in unsafe sex, such as female sex workers are the most at risk population groups due to multiple sexual partners and inconsistent condom use. The aim of this study was to assess condom utilization and sexual behavior of female sex workers in Gondar town, Northwest Ethiopia.
Methods: A quantitative cross-sectional study triangulated with qualitative method was conducted from March 20 - April 10, 2014 in Gondar town. The quantitative data were collected through interviewing 488 female sex workers while in-depth interview was administered to collect qualitative data from 10 female sex workers. The collected data were entered into EPI-INFO version 3.5.3 and exported to SPSS version 20.0 software for analysis. Logistic regression analysis was done to determine the association between condom utilization and independent variables.
Results: This study revealed that less than half (47.7%) of the respondents utilized condom with any type of client. Secondary education or above, perceiving themselves at risk of HIV/AIDS infection, having awareness that sexually transmitted infections could increase HIV infection, being tested for HIV/AIDS in the last 12 months, and having lower number of clients in a month were positively associated with condom utilization.
Conclusion: This finding depicted that condom utilization was low among female sex workers. Thus, developing and implementing target oriented behavioral change and communication strategies are needed to prevent the risk of acquiring HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections in female sex workers.
Keywords: AIDS; Condom utilization; Ethiopia; Female sex worker; STIs.