Abstract

Post-exposure prophylaxis (PEP) is an effective human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) prevention medication taken after exposure, yet it is not widely used in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ+) community. Understanding its acceptability is vital, given this population's increased risk for contracting HIV. Drawing from the Health Literacy Skills Framework and the Theory of Planned Behavior, this study provides an examination of PEP-related awareness and knowledge, as well as intention to request and use PEP. Using a cross-sectional survey design, a convenience sample of 131 LGBTQ+ college students from a Southeastern university was recruited through email and social media. Survey responses were analyzed using chi-square tests, t-tests, and logistic regression to identify factors associated with PEP. Findings indicate that awareness of PEP was significantly related to race, prior HIV-related discussions with providers, previous HIV testing, use of student health services, health literacy, and general health knowledge. To test knowledge, those indicating PEP awareness were asked further questions. However, very few respondents provided correct responses. Intention to request a PEP prescription was significantly related to normative and control beliefs, with intention being more likely among those who anticipate less stigma and those who had prior HIV-related discussions with a provider. Intention to take PEP was significantly related to normative beliefs, with intention being more likely among those who anticipate less stigma and perceive greater acceptance from others. Overall, these results provide partial support for the relevance of the Health Literacy Skills Framework and the Theory of Planned Behavior in understanding factors related to PEP. Future research is needed to more fully document lack of knowledge and identify predictors of knowledge deficits. Health and human service systems can utilize these findings when selecting strategies to increase PEP awareness and usage, in hopes of reducing HIV transmission and its related negative impacts.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2021

Semester

Summer

Advisor

Steen, Julie

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College

College of Health Professions and Sciences

Department

School of Public Administration

Degree Program

Public Affairs; Social Work

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0008650;DP0025381

URL

https://purls.library.ucf.edu/go/DP0025381

Language

English

Release Date

August 2021

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

Location

UCF Downtown

Included in

Social Work Commons

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