Intimate partner violence is linked to less HIV testing uptake among high-risk, HIV-negative women in Atlanta.


Increased risk of HIV acquisition among intimate partner violence (IPV) survivors underscores the need for regular HIV testing, but IPV-associated shame, stigma, and control may hinder uptake. Between March and November 2014, we conducted a cross-sectional study of 79 HIV-negative, high-risk women aged 18-50 in Atlanta, Georgia, to explore whether IPV experience was associated with less uptake of HIV testing, and fewer motivations and more reported barriers to HIV testing uptake. Psychological and physical and/or sexual abuse was significantly associated with less past-year HIV testing (p = .022 and p = .030, respectively), longer time since last HIV test (r = 0.282, p = .012, and r = 0.282, p = .012, respectively), and more reported barriers to HIV testing (r = 0.406, p = .004, and r = 0.389, p = .006). While requiring further validation, these preliminary findings suggest IPV survivors need additional support to access HIV testing services.