Rates of sexual partner acquisition from nationally representative surveys: variation between countries and by age, sex, wealth, partner and HIV status

Clara Calvert, Rachel Scott, Melissa Palmer, Albert Dube, Milly Marston, Kaye Wellings, Emma Slaymaker*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background. Knowing levels and determinants of partnership acquisition will help inform interventions that try to reduce transmission of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV.
Methods. We used population-based, cross-sectional data from 47 Demographic and Health Surveys to calculate rates of partner acquisition among men and women (15–49 years), and identified socio-demographic correlates for partner acquisition. Partner acquisition rates were estimated as the total number of acquisitions divided by the person-time in the period covered by the survey. For each survey and by sex, we estimated age-specific partner acquisition rates and used age-adjusted piecewise exponential survival models to explore whether there was any association between wealth, HIV status and partner status with partner acquisition rates.
Results. Across countries, the median partner acquisition rates were 30/100 person-years for men (interquartile range 21–45) and 13/100 person-years for women (interquartile range 6–18). There were substantial variations in partner acquisition rates by age. Associations between wealth and partner acquisition rates varied across countries. People with a cohabiting partner were less
likely to acquire a new one, and this effect was stronger for women than men and varied substantially between countries. Women living with HIV had higher partner acquisition rates than HIV-negative women but this association was less apparent for men. At a population level, partner acquisition rates were correlated with HIV incidence.
Conclusions. Partner acquisition rates are variable and are associated with important correlates of STIs and thus could be used to identify groups at high risk of STIs.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberSH23134
Number of pages15
JournalSexual Health
Volume21
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 18 Dec 2023

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • HIV
  • STI
  • sexual behaviour
  • sexual partners
  • epidemiology
  • Africa
  • Eastern Europe
  • South America
  • Central America
  • South Asia

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Rates of sexual partner acquisition from nationally representative surveys: variation between countries and by age, sex, wealth, partner and HIV status'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this