African American women aged 50 and older are disproportionately affected by the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Despite African Americans making up 11% of all older women in the United States, in 2001, they accounted for more than 50% of AIDS cases among older women and more than 65% of HIV cases among older women. Using the AIDS Risk Reduction Model as a conceptual framework, this study investigated HIV risk behavior among older rural African American women (mean age = 58 years).A cross-sectional survey was conducted (n = 181) in three rural counties in South Carolina.Most (67%) of the women had at least one sex partner in the past five years, and of these, more than half (59.5%) reported at least one sexual risk behavior. High-risk behavior was associated with less education, lower condom use self-efficacy, more peers who discussed HIV-related risk behavior, and less comfort communicating with partners about sex.A significant proportion of older African American women living in rural counties are at increased risk for HIV infection, suggesting an urgent need for HIV prevention efforts to target this population.
View details for DOI 10.1016/j.ypmed.2004.03.005
View details for Web of Science ID 000224053500023
View details for PubMedID 15351550