Predictors of frequency of condom use and attitudes among sexually active female military personnel in Nigeria
E James Essien1, Osaro Mgbere2, Emmanuel Monjok1, Ernest Ekong3, Susan Abughosh1, Marcia M Holstad4
1Institute of Community Health, University of Houston, Texas Medical Center, Houston, TX, USA; 2Houston Department of Health and Human Services, Houston, TX, USA; 3Institute for Health Research and Development, Yaba, Lagos, Nigeria; 4Nell Hodgson School of Nursing, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, USA
Background: Despite awareness of condom efficacy, in protecting against both human immunodeficiency virus/sexually transmitted diseases (HIV/STDs) and unintended pregnancy; some females find it difficult to use or permit condom use consistently because of the power imbalances or other dynamics operating in their relationships with males. The purpose of this study was to determine the factors that predict the frequency of condom use and attitudes among sexually active female military personnel in Nigeria.
Methods: This study used a cross-sectional design in which a total of 346 responses were obtained from consenting female military personnel in two cantonments in Southwestern Nigeria between 2006 and 2008. The study instrument was designed to assess HIV/acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) knowledge (HAK), HIV risk behaviors (HRB), alcohol and drug use, condom attitudes and barriers (CAS) condom use self-efficacy (CUS) and social support to condom use (SSC). The sociodemographic characteristics of participants were also captured. Univariate analysis and multivariable logistic regression were used for modeling the predictors of condom use.
Results: The results showed that 63% of the respondents reported using condoms always, 26% sometimes used condoms and 11% never used condoms during a sexual encounter in the past three months. Univariate analysis revealed that significant associations existed between CAB (P < 0.05), HRB (P < 0.01) and SSC (P < 0.01) with the frequency of condom use. The following sociodemographic variables: age, marital status, number of children, employment status and type of sexual relationship were also significantly (P ≤ 0.05) associated with consistent condom use in the study group. Multivariate analysis indicated that marital status, type of relationship and CAB were the only significant predictors (r2 = 0.37; P ≤ 0.05) of condom use behaviors after adjusting for all other factors in the model.
Conclusions: Findings indicate that consistent condom use could be enhanced through gender-specific intervention programs that incorporate the predictor variables identified. These are likely to be successful in decreasing sexual risk behaviors in the subpopulation.
Keywords: HIV/AIDS, condom use, risky behavior, military personnel, Nigeria
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