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P4.059 HIV Prevalence and Behavioural Risk Factors Among Male Sex Workers (Money Boys) in an Urban City of Southwest China
  1. B Yu1,
  2. X Wang2,
  3. H Xu2,
  4. J Zhang3,
  5. X Ma3,
  6. R Lorway1,
  7. J F Blanchard1
  1. 1University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB, Canada
  2. 2Tongle Health Counseling Service Centre, Chengdu, China
  3. 3Sichuan University, Chengdu, China


Background Male sex workers (MSW) in China, known as “money boys”, have been identified as a bridging population for transmission of HIV/STIs between communities of men who have sex with men (MSM) and the general population.

Method Based on geographic mapping and enumeration results in Chengdu, a sample of sex work venues (n = 23) was selected and profiled to understand the network operation and forming of the MSW industry in Chengdu. To reduce the social desirability bias of face-to-face interviews, Polling Booth Survey (PBS) was used to document the risks behaviours of MSWs (n = 130). Data from voluntary counselling/testing (VCT) of MSW (N = 531) and general MSMs (N = 1908) were analysed for HIV prevalence.

Results On average, MSW provided sexual services to 4–6 clients (mean = 2.4 ± 3.5) per day, with as many as 10 clients (mean = 7.1 ± 5.25 std) in a peak day. All respondents reported 100% condom use during face-to-face interviews. PBS results, however, revealed that only 74% of MSW used condoms every time and 76% in last anal sex. Using condoms with permanent sex partners was lower (44% last month anal sex). 14% of MSW had anal sex 3+ times, and 4% had anal sex 7+ times in one day. VCT data showed a relatively lower HIV prevalence (6%) in MSW (N = 531) compared to the HIV prevalence (10%) in MSM in 2012. 29% of MSWs identified as heterosexual, 20% as bisexual, and 51% as gay.

Conclusion Male sex work in urban China has grown into a thriving industry. Due to high client volumes, unprotected anal sex, multiple concurrent sexual partners, and participation in sexual networks that span various cities throughout China, MSWs are at a higher risk for HIV/STI transmission. PBS is a more reliable method to examine risky sexual behaviours among high risk populations.

  • HIV prevalence and risk factors
  • Male sex workers in China
  • Polling Booth Survey

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