HIV prevalence and risk behaviours among international truck drivers in Azerbaijan

Abstract number: 1733_1401

Botros B.A., Aliyev Q., Saad M., Monteville M., Michael A., Nasibov Z., Mustafaev H., Scott P., Sanchez J., Carr J., Earhart K.

Objectives: Assess HIV prevalence and high-risk behaviours among international truck drivers (TDs) traveling between Azerbaijan and Russia, Europe, China, Central/West Asia and Middle East.

Methods: Clinics were established near two major truck terminals in Baku. TDs who volunteered to participate signed consent in his language and received pre- and post-test counseling. Each participant completed a questionnaire that included demographics and information about his personal sexual behaviour, use of condoms and international travel history. A blood sample was obtained by finger stick and tested using 2 different rapid HIV tests: 1) Determine (Abbott Laboratories, Abbott Park, IL USA) and 2) Oraquick (Orasure Technologies Inc., Bethlehem PA USA). Test result was provided within 30 minutes. Enrollment was performed between July 2004 and October 2005. Data was analysed using SPSS version 11.1 statistical package (SPSS Inc, Chicago, IL, USA).

Results: A total of 3,763 TDs from 21 countries were enrolled. All were males between the age of 24 and 67 (median, 45 years). Majority came from Turkey (n = 1369), Russia (n = 1145), Ukraine (n = 662), Georgia (n = 234) and Azerbaijan (n = 184). 58 TD (1.54%) (95% CI: 1.17–1.99) tested HIV positive. Highest prevalence was among Russians (2.88%), then Ukrainians (1.66%), Azerbaijani (1.09%), Georgians (0.85%) and Turkish (0.73%). 1.9% of participants were injecting drug users (IDUs) and 60% of these tested HIV positive compared to 0.4% of non IDU (P < 0.001). Of those using condoms with FSW, 0.7% were HIV positive, whereas of those not using condoms 3.6% were positive (p < 0.001). Men having sex with men (MSM) had higher (p < 0.001) HIV prevalence (42.9%). TD that had STD had higher (P < 0.001) HIV prevalence (4.4%) than those not having STD (1.2%). Circumcised TD had lower (p = 0.001) HIV prevalence (0.8%) than non-circumcised (2.2%).

Conclusions: TDs may engage in risky behaviours and are a bridge population for transmission of HIV to the community. This study demonstrates that HIV is present among international TDs in Azerbaijan. As is true for other countries of former Soviet Union, HIV infection was highly associated with IDU. Other associated factors for HIV included not using condoms, MSM and STDs. TDs transiting Azerbaijan should be considered a high risk group and should be a target for surveillance and prevention programmes. Prevention programmes in this region should target knowledge and risk behaviours of TDs.

Session Details

Date: 31/03/2007
Time: 00:00-00:00
Session name: European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases
Location: ICC, Munich, Germany
Presentation type:
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