Core Group 3: HIV testing

toolkit material

Title and definition

HIV testing in the general population and in specific populations 

  1. Ever and date of the last test (or whether tested in the last 12 months if only UNGASS 7-8)
  2. Result of the last test (reported or measured)

 

Purpose and rationale 

To assess:

a1) the coverage of HIV testing in the general population and in specific populationsa2)  the proportion of persons who had a recent test (UNGASS 7-8)

b) the reported HIV prevalence in the general population and specific populations

Method of measurement

a) Respondents are asked if they ever had an HIV test, and if yes, the date of the last test. An alternative is asking respondents if they had an HIV test in the last 12 months (UNGASS)

1) Numerator: Number of respondents who ever had an HIV test 

Denominator: All respondents

2) Numerator: Number of respondents who had an HIV test in the last 12 months and who know the result

Denominator: All respondents

b) (only if the questionnaire is anonymous, not administered face to face or by phone) Respondents are asked if the result was positive, negative, or if they don't know

Numerator: Number of respondents who were positive at the last HIV test

Denominator: Number of respondents who ever had an HIV test

Collection method  Population-based surveys in the general population and young people, population–based or  convenient samples in other specific populations
Measurement frequency  Every 4-5 years in the general population and in young people; more frequently in higher risk populations; context-dependent
Details of Disaggregation The indicator should be presented separately for males and for females; it should be disaggregated: in the general population by the age groups 15–19, 20–24 and 25–49, 50+ years; in specific populations (MSM, IDU, SW), by. <25, 25+.
Guidelines for interpretation 

In populations data collection is not conducted in a representative sample of the population. information about the nature of the sample should be reported in the narrative to facilitate interpretation and analysis over time.

Asking a question on the result of the test can occur only when the data collected are anonymous and collected in a way which preserves anonymity (not in face to face or by phone)

Strengths and weaknesses More questions are needed to differentiate voluntary testing from other situations, such as testing in the case of blood donation
Additional sources of information   This allows for construction of UNGASS indicator No. 7 (and also of No. 8 for most-at–risk populations): percentage of women and men aged 15-49 who received an HIV test in the last 12 months and who know their results. See this Guidelines on contruction of core indicators from the United Nations General Assembly Special Session on HIV/AIDS