Increased adolescent HIV testing with a hybrid mobile strategy in Uganda and Kenya

AIDS. 2016 Sep 10;30(14):2121-6. doi: 10.1097/QAD.0000000000001180.


Objective: We sought to increase adolescent HIV testing across rural communities in east Africa and identify predictors of undiagnosed HIV.

Design: Hybrid mobile testing.

Methods: We enumerated 116 326 adolescents (10-24 years) in 32 communities of Uganda and Kenya (

Search: NCT01864603): 98 694 (85%) reported stable (≥6 months of prior year) residence. In each community we performed hybrid testing: 2-week multidisease community health campaign that included HIV testing, followed by home-based testing of community health campaign nonparticipants. We measured adolescent HIV testing coverage and prevalence, and determined predictors of newly diagnosed HIV among HIV-infected adolescents using multivariable logistic regression.

Results: A total of 86 421 (88%) stable adolescents tested for HIV; coverage was 86, 90, and 88% in early (10-14), mid (15-17), and late (18-24) adolescents, respectively. Self-reported prior testing was 9, 26, and 55% in early, mid, and late adolescents tested, respectively. HIV prevalence among adolescents tested was 1.6 and 0.6% in Ugandan women and men, and 7.1 and 1.5% in Kenyan women and men, respectively. Prevalence increased in mid-adolescence for women and late adolescence for men. Among HIV-infected adolescents, 58% reported newly diagnosed HIV. In multivariate analysis of HIV-infected adolescents, predictors of newly diagnosed HIV included male sex [odds ratio (OR) = 1.97 (95% confidence interval (CI): 1.42-2.73)], Ugandan residence [OR = 2.63 (95% CI: 2.08-3.31)], and single status [OR = 1.62 (95% CI: 1.23-2.14) vs. married)].

Conclusions: The SEARCH hybrid strategy tested 88% of stable adolescents for HIV, a substantial increase over the 28% reporting prior testing. The majority (57%) of HIV-infected adolescents were new diagnoses. Mobile HIV testing for adults should be leveraged to reach adolescents for HIV treatment and prevention.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Diagnostic Tests, Routine / methods*
  • Diagnostic Tests, Routine / statistics & numerical data*
  • Female
  • HIV Infections / diagnosis*
  • Humans
  • Kenya
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods*
  • Mass Screening / statistics & numerical data*
  • Mobile Health Units*
  • Rural Population
  • Uganda
  • Young Adult