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Sex Transm Infect 81:508-510 doi:10.1136/sti.2004.014282
  • Behaviour

Sexual risk behaviour among Surinamese and Antillean migrants travelling to their countries of origin

  1. M A Kramer1,
  2. A van den Hoek1,
  3. R A Coutinho1,2,
  4. M Prins2
  1. 1Cluster Infectious Diseases, Health Service Amsterdam, Netherlands
  2. 2Department of Human Retrovirology, Academic Medical Service Center, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
  1. Correspondence to:
 M A Kramer
 Health Service Amsterdam, Cluster of Infectious Diseases, HIV&STI Research, Nieuwe Achtergracht 100, PO Box 2200, 1000 CE Amsterdam, Netherlands; mkramer{at}gggd.amsterdam.nl
  • Accepted 29 March 2005

Abstract

Objectives: To examine travel related sexual risk behaviour among migrants living in Amsterdam.

Methods: People originating from Surinam (n = 798) and the Netherlands Antilles (n = 227) were recruited in order to study the heterosexual spread of HIV within ethnic groups. Log binomial regression was used to study determinants for homeland travel over the past 5 years; logistic regression was used to study determinants of unprotected sex on these visits.

Results: Of the migrants, 38% of men and 42% of women visited their homeland. Visits were most likely among men who had lived ⩾7 years in the Netherlands, were employed, had a high educational level and were/had been married. For women, visiting was associated with older age and living in the Netherlands for ⩾8 years. Of migrants visiting their homeland, 47% of men and 11% of women acquired a local sexual partner. For male travellers, Surinamese origin (adjusted OR 10.66; 95% CI 1.72 to 104.48) and a history of ⩾1 sexually transmitted infection (STI) (adjusted OR 12.51; 95% CI 3.75 to 46.95) were associated with having unprotected sex with local partners. For women, having >1 partner in the past 5 years (OR 13.57; 95% CI 2.57 to 250.28) was associated with unprotected sex with local partners.

Conclusion: Migrants are at substantial risk for HIV and STIs while visiting their homeland. It is important to reach migrants, who are likely to engage in unprotected sex during visits, for pretravel health education. Additional research on risk behaviour in the homeland and the Netherlands is needed to identify migrants with high risk behaviour.

Footnotes

  • There is no conflict of interest.