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A Multi-Level Profile of African-American Women’s Sexual Risks: Partnerships, Context, and More ADAORA A. ADIMORA, MD, MPH.

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Presentation on theme: "A Multi-Level Profile of African-American Women’s Sexual Risks: Partnerships, Context, and More ADAORA A. ADIMORA, MD, MPH."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Multi-Level Profile of African-American Women’s Sexual Risks: Partnerships, Context, and More ADAORA A. ADIMORA, MD, MPH

2 STI BEHAVIORAL EPIDEMIOLOGY: NEW PARADIGM Population-level parameters, including sexual network patterns Pattern of linkages critical in STI transmission –e.g., sexual interaction between subpopulations African Americans –Dissortative mixing (peripheral blacks 5x as likely as whites to choose partner from core) –Segregated partner choices (more likely to choose other blacks as partners) –Laumann E, Youm Y. STDs 1999; 26:250 Prevalence of concurrent partnerships

3 NATIONAL SURVEY OF FAMILY GROWTH 10,847 U.S. women interviewed in 1995 CAPI with calendars to improve date recall First and last date of sexual intercourse with partners Computer algorithm: >2 “current” partnerships or overlapping dates of partnerships Visual review of computer records



6 CONCURRENT PARTNERSHIPS, WOMEN, U.S. (1995, NSFG) Adimora AA, Schoenbach VJ, Bonas DM, et al. Concurrent Partnerships among Women in the US. Epidemiology 2002; 13;320-327

7 Marital Status by Ethnicity


9 Social Context of Sexual Relationships Among Rural African Americans ADIMORA, ADAORA A. MD, MPH*†; SCHOENBACH, VICTOR J. PhD†; MARTINSON, FRANCIS E. A. MBChB, MPH, PhD*; DONALDSON, KATHRYN H. MPH*; FULLILOVE, ROBERT E. EdD‡ AND; ARAL, SEVGI O. PhD§ Sexually Transmitted Diseases 2001;28:69-76

10 FOCUS GROUPS Employment and economic opportunities “There are no jobs for anybody coming right out of high school…” “You can have all the schooling in the world, but if you’re black you can’t get a good job.” “Most of the temporary agencies …like to send the blacks to jobs in factories…” “Every job here is dead end with terrible pay.”

11 FOCUS GROUPS Racism/Race relations “A lot of things are divided racially… you have a white side of town, and the black side…doesn’t usually mix. It’s sort of covert. You don’t have white folks walking around in robes or anything, but in the schools and things you can see it.” “It’s hard to get a loan to get a house. Banks don’t just give black people loans. You got to know somebody.”

12 FOCUS GROUPS Racism/Race relations (cont) “I would say it was greatly polarized. When I was going to school here in the high school, the type of classes you could get into, like the college prep courses, had a lot to do with what type of family you came from, your race,…”

13 FOCUS GROUPS Relationships between men and women “To get to the next semi-urban city, if you don’t have a job, or a good education, you’ve got to depend on somebody to get you there. For young black women, it’s not a good position to be in without a good job or a good education.” “The choices in men are very limited around here. I guess the women put up with the men they have because there aren’t that many.”

14 FOCUS GROUPS Relationships between men and women “There’s so many black men in prison, strung out on drugs, or dead, that if a decent black lady finds a decent black man, she’s going to do whatever it takes to get him.” “It’s not that many good men worth anything in this area.” “The ratio of women to men is very high.”

15 FOCUS GROUPS Concurrent partnerships “Most [unmarried] couples aren’t going to be true to each other.” “If they aren’t planning on getting married, they’re probably going to have relationships on the side.” “I say it’s quite common for people to be involved in relationships with more than one person at a time.”

16 FOCUS GROUPS Respondents described: Pervasive economic and racial oppression Lack of community recreation, boredom, resultant substance abuse Shortage of black men (higher mortality and incarceration rates Widespread concurrency among unmarried people Conclusion: Contextual features may promote sexual patterns that transmit STIs Adimora, Schoenbach, et al. Sexually Transm Dis 2001;28:69-76


18 RISK BEHAVIORS, GENERAL POPULATION MALES (%)FEMALES (%) Traded sex105 Smoked crack55 Crack/snorted cocaine/heroin 95 >5 drinks/day5126 Unprotected sex >10x 9282

19 GENERAL POPULATION: PARTNER RISKS MALES (%)FEMALES (%) IDU- very likely 54 Partner traded sex 138 Crack - very likely 1415 Partner had other partners 4768

20 GENERAL POPULATION: INCARCERATION* MALES (%)FEMALES (%) Respondent incarcerated 265 Partner incarcerated 1454 *> 24 hours in past 10 yrs


22 CONCURRENCY ODDS MALESFEMALES Marital status4.2 (1.6, 11.0)*1.9 (0.9, 4.1) Income < $16K2.6 (0.8, 8.6)1.8 (0.8, 4.2) < High School1.1 (0.3, 3.5)1.3 (0.5, 3.2) Past incarceration 5.3 (1.6, 17.8)*1.7 (0.4, 7.9) Partner incarceration 2.7 (0.7, 11.3)3.0 (1.4, 6.4)* controls

23 CONCURRENCY ODDS MENWOMEN Partner had other partners 4.5 (1.7, 11.9)* 11.3 (3.3, 38.7)* Partner had STD 4.4 (0.9, 22.1)3.6 (1.6, 8.2)* Respondent traded sex 7.4 (0.9, 63.4)2.3 (0.5, 9.7)


25 SEX RATIO AMONG SELECTED ETHNIC GROUPS, US, 2000 Source: US Bureau of the Census. Census 2000 Summary File 1. Vol 2003, 2000.

26 CONTEXT-NETWORK PATHWAYS POVERTY Pool of marriageable men Marital instability CONCURRENCY SEX RATIO

27 CONTEXT-NETWORK RELATIONSHIPS Residential segregation by race Concentration of adverse social and economic influences (poverty, drugs, violence) Selection of partners from neighborhood

28 CONTEXT-NETWORK RELATIONSHIPS INCARCERATION Disrupts partnerships Inmates: sex in Pool with HIV prevalence Employment prospects Pool of men in community New long-term links with antisocial networks SEXUAL NETWORKS

29 HIV/STI RACIAL DISPARITY Networks/Population parameters Concurrency Evidence of dense sexual networks Sexual bridging between general population and high-risk, high prevalence subgroups

30 HIV/STI RACIAL DISPARITY Socioeconomic forces that inhibit stable partnering and increase adverse network patterns Racial discrimination Economic oppression Low sex ratios

31 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Victor J. Schoenbach, PhD Francis Martinson, MD, PhD Dana Bonas, MPH Sevgi Aral, PhD Ward Cates, MD, MPH JoAnne Earp, PhD Robert Fullilove, EdD Amy Lansky, PhD Greg Samsa, PhD Stephanie Betran, RN Kathryn Donaldson, MPH Tonya Stancil, MPH Merritha Williams, RN NC HIV/STD Control Section

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