Background Effective partner involvement in management of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) remains one of the major pillars of efficient management of STIs. In clinical practise in Ghana, this has not been very easy to achieve as it behoves on the index patient to bring partners in to the health service provider. This is compounded by the fact that there are no laws to compel practitioner to enforce partner notification and reporting. This study investigates the relationship between the success of partner notification and marital status among patients attending Suntreso STI clinic in Kumasi, Ghana.
Methods Clinical records of Two thousand seven hundred and forty six (2,746; Male- 37.2%, 1022/2746; Female- 62.8%, 1724/2746) patients who sought STI treatment between January 2010 and December 2011 were reviewed. Marital status, gender, notice of notification, response of partner of index patient and diagnosis were recorded. Data was analysed using SPSS
Results Of the 2,746 patients, 34.7% were married, 35.3% were single, 17.1% cohabitating and 12.9% separated/divorced. Partners of 61.3% (1683/2746: Male- 29.0%, 488/1683; Female-71.0%, 1,195) of the index patients responded to the call. Those who responded, were made up of 19.1% (182/953) of the married persons, 58.9%(571/696) of single, 71.1%(334/470) cohabitating and 44.6%(157/354) separated/divorced.
Conclusion Married couples in relatively stable relationships had lower partner reporting rate (19.1%) compared with those in other relations. Married males were more reluctant to report than female counterparts. Misunderstanding and possibility of mistrust among partners may have contributed to lower rates of partner reporting. Higher reporting rate among partners in cohabitating relationships may relate to the feeling of freedom and the ability to easily disengage from the relationship should strife arise
- Stable Relationship
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