Objective: To estimate the size of the population of female sex workers (FSWs) based on the HIV/AIDS behavioural surveillance approach in two Chinese cities, using a multiplier method.
Method: Relevant questions were inserted into the questionnaires given to two behavioural surveillance groups-female STD clinic attendees and the FSWs. The size of the FSW population was derived by multiplying the number of FSWs in selected STD clinics over the study period by the proportion of the FSW population who reported having attended the selected STD clinics over the same period.
Results: The size of the FSW population in the urban area of Xingyi was estimated to be about 2,500 (95% Confidence Interval (CI): 2,000-3,400). This accounted for 3.6% of the total urban adult female population. There were estimated to be 17,500 FSWs in the urban area of Guiyang ( 95% CI :10,300-31,900), or about 3.4% of its total urban adult female population (rounded to the nearest 100).
Conclusions: the multiplier method could be a useful and cost-effective approach to estimating to the FSW population, especially suitable in countries where HIV behavioural surveillance has been established in high-risk populations.
- Behavioural surveillance
- Female sex workers
- Multiplier methods
- Population size