Sex Transm Infect 86:i69-i75 doi:10.1136/sti.2009.038653
  • Supplement

Factors associated with awareness and utilisation of a community mobilisation intervention for female sex workers in Andhra Pradesh, India

Open Access
  1. Elizabeth Reed
  1. Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, USA
  1. Correspondence to Kim M Blankenship, Department of Sociology and Duke Global Health Institute, Duke University, PO Box 90519, Durham, NC 27708, USA; kim.blankenship{at}
  1. Contributors KB conceptualised the analysis and interpreted results, wrote the introduction, findings and discussion sections, and made all decisions regarding final content. RB conducted the analysis, produced tables, draughted the methods section and provided input on all other sections of the paper. ER advised on the analysis, assisted with the drafting of the methods and results sections, and provided editorial input on all sections of the paper.

  • Accepted 30 October 2009


Objectives Examine factors associated with awareness and active utilisation of a community mobilisation intervention (CMI) to address HIV risk in female sex workers (FSWs) in a context characterised by multiple forms of sex work.

Design Data came from two rounds, conducted in Spring 2006 and Spring 2007, of a serial cross-sectional survey of FSWs (n=812 in round 1, n=673 in round 2) recruited through respondent-driven sampling in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh, India.

Methods Descriptive statistics compared characteristics of programme aware and unaware FSWs and from among the aware, to characterise active program users. Multinomial logistic regression was used to assess factors associated with programme exposure.

Results Between Rounds 1 and 2, programme awareness increased from 41.8% to 69.6% of respondents, and active utilisation (among those who were aware) increased from 49.2% to 61.0%. Street-based FSWs were under-represented and brothel-based FSWs overrepresented in both groups and rounds. Geographic proximity and literacy were associated with programme awareness but not utilisation. The most important factor associated with both forms of intervention exposure across rounds was willingness to be identified in public as a FSWs (OR 2.2–4.8).

Conclusion Public visibility is a critical component of CMIs. Such interventions should develop strategies for involving FSWs that allow them to remain invisible, while also working to reduce the threat associated with public visibility. In contexts where sex work occurs in multiple venues, it is important to develop CMIs that include and address the needs of FSWs working in them all.