n African Journal for Physical Health Education, Recreation and Dance - Exploring the role of HIV disclosure in partner testing and willingness to use condoms : HIV and AIDS

Supplement 1
  • ISSN : 1117-4315


Male partner testing is an important strategy for the success of prevention of mother to child transmission (PMTCT) of HIV programmes. It also plays a crucial role in the adoption of condom use among couples to prevent new infection and re-infections. Yet, very few partners access HIV testing in PMTCT. The study assessed the role of disclosure in partner testing and willingness to use condoms during the post natal period. Focus group discussions were used to collect data from postnatal women receiving PMTCT interventions in Tshwane Metsweding sub-district of Gauteng province, South Africa. Women disclosed their HIV results to male partners and requested that their partners take the HIV test. Male partners were reluctant and preferentially used condoms. Only six of the 25 women knew the HIV status of their male partners. The male partners assumed that their HIV status was similar to that of their HIV positive partners. They also associated condom use with unfaithfulness. Disclosed women insisted on condom use, and opted for abstinence where partners refused to use condoms. Disclosure to male partners did not translate to partner testing and willingness to use condoms, and lack of partner testing was the main barrier to condom use. Women had a comprehensive understanding of the risk of reinfections and insisted on condom use. Male partners should be provided with information about PMTCT by health professionals providing these services. Integrating couple counselling in PMTCT will improve and increase adherence to condom use.

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