Experience of violence and adverse reproductive health outcomes, HIV risks among mobile female sex workers in India

Swain, Suvakanta N.; Saggurti, Niranjan; Battala, Madhusudana; Verma, Ravi K.; Jain, Anrudh K.
January 2011
BMC Public Health;2011 Supplement 4, Vol. 11 Issue Suppl 4, p357
Academic Journal
Background: Female sex workers (FSWs) are a population sub-group most affected by the HIV epidemic in India and elsewhere. Despite research and programmatic attention to FSWs, little is known regarding sex workers' reproductive health and HIV risk in relation to their experiences of violence. This paper therefore aims to understand the linkages between violence and the reproductive health and HIV risks among a group of mobile FSWs in India. Methods: Data are drawn from a cross-sectional behavioural survey conducted in 22 districts from four high HIV prevalence states (Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu) in India between September 2007 and July 2008. The survey sample included 5,498 FSWs who had moved to at least two different places for sex work in the past two years, and are classified as mobile FSWs in the current study. Analyses calculated the prevalence of past year experiences of violence; and adjusted logistic regression models examined the association between violence and reproductive health and HIV risks after controlling for background characteristics and program exposure. Results: Approximately one-third of the total mobile FSWs (30.5%, n = 1,676) reported experiencing violence at least once in the past year; 11% reported experiencing physical violence, and 19.5% reported experiencing sexual violence. Results indicate that FSWs who had experienced any violence (physical or sexual) were significantly more likely to be vulnerable to both reproductive health and HIV risks. For example, FSWs who experienced violence were more likely than those who did not experience violence to have experienced a higher number of pregnancies (adjusted odds ratio [OR] = 1.2, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.0-1.6), ever experienced pregnancy loss (adjusted OR = 1.4, 95% CI = 1.2-1.6), ever experienced forced termination of pregnancy (adjusted OR = 2.4, 95% CI = 2.0-2.7), experienced multiple forced termination of pregnancies (adjusted OR = 2.2, 95% CI = 1.7-2.8), and practice inconsistent condom use currently (adjusted OR = 1.97, 95% CI: 1.4-2.0). Among FSWs who experienced violence, those who experienced sexual violence were more likely than those who had experienced physical violence to report inconsistent condom use (adjusted OR = 1.8, 95% CI: 1.4-2.3), and experience STI symptoms (adjusted OR = 1.3, 95% CI: 1.1-1.7). Conclusion: The pervasiveness of violence and its association with reproductive health and HIV risk highlights that the abuse in general is an important determinant for reproductive health risks; and sexual violence is significantly associated with HIV risks among those who experienced violence. Existing community mobilization programs that have primarily focused on empowering FSWs should broaden their efforts to promote reproductive health in addition to the prevention of HIV among all FSWs, with particular emphasis on FSWs who experienced violence.


Related Articles

  • Violence against female sex workers in Karnataka state, south India: impact on health, and reductions in violence following an intervention program. Beattie, Tara S. H.; Bhattacharjee, Parinita; Ramesh, B. M.; Gurnani, Vandana; Anthony, John; Isac, Shajy; Mohan, H. L.; Ramakrishnan, Aparajita; Wheeler, Tisha; Bradley, Janet; Blanchard, James F.; Moses, Stephen // BMC Public Health;2010, Vol. 10 Issue 1, p476 

    Background: Violence against female sex workers (FSWs) can impede HIV prevention efforts and contravenes their human rights. We developed a multi-layered violence intervention targeting policy makers, secondary stakeholders (police, lawyers, media), and primary stakeholders (FSWs), as part of...

  • Prevalence and risk of HIV infection among female sex workers in Burkina Faso. Lankoandé, Salif; Meda, Nicolas; Sangaré, Lassana; Compaoré, Issaka P.; Catraye, Joseph; Sanou, Paul T.; Van Dyck, Eddy; Cartoux, Michel; Sankara, Olga; Curtis, Valerie; Soudré, Robert B.; Lankoandé, S; Meda, N; Sangaré, L; Compaoré, I P; Catraye, J; Sanou, P T; van Dyck, E; Cartoux, M; Sankara, O // International Journal of STD & AIDS;Mar1998, Vol. 9 Issue 3, p146 

    Little information is available regarding human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection among female sex workers (FSW) in Burkina Faso, West Africa. A cross-sectional study was conducted in Ouagadougou and Bobo-Dioulasso, the 2 largest cities of the country, to determine the prevalence of HIV...

  • Decline in unprotected sex & sexually transmitted infections (STIs) among female sex workers from repeated behavioural & biological surveys in three southern States of India. Adhikary, Rajatashuvra; Gautam, Abhishek; Lenka, Satya Ranjan; Goswami, Prabuddhagopal; Ramakrishnan, Lakshmi; George, Bitra; Mainkar, Mandar K.; Thilakavathi, S.; Brahmam, G. N. V.; Paranjape, Ramesh R. // Indian Journal of Medical Research;Oct2012 Supplement, p5 

    Background & objectives: Since 2003, Avahan the India AIDS Initiative, has been working with female sex workers (FSW) in Andhra Pradesh (AP), Maharashtra (MH) and Tamil Nadu (TN) using a package of preventive services. Two rounds (R1 and R2) of Integrated Behavioural and Biological Assessment...

  • Unexpectedly high HIV prevalence among female sex workers in Bangkok, Thailand in a respondent-driven sampling survey. Manopaiboon, C.; Prybyiski, D.; Subhachaturas, W.; Tanpradech, S.; Suksripanich, O.; Siangphoe, U.; Johnston, L. G.; Akarasewi, P.; Anand, A.; Fox, K. K.; Whitehead, S. J. // International Journal of STD & AIDS;Jan2013, Vol. 24 Issue 1, p34 

    The pattern of sex work in Thailand has shifted substantially over the last two decades from direct commercial esthblishments to indirect venues and non-venue-based settings. This respondent-driven sampling survey was conducted in Bangkok in 2007 among female sex workers (FSW) in non-venue-based...


    The present study describes partial results concerning information and prevalence of HIV/Aids in a group of sex workers (SW) in the Táchira State (Venezuela) as part of a research program to elaborate an intervention proposal in the Venezuelan area of the frontier with Colombia. A...

  • PROSTITUTION AND HIV: WHAT YOU CANT SAY MIGHT HURT YOU. Doyle, Heather // GPSolo;May/Jun2013, Vol. 30 Issue 3, p72 

    An excerpt of the article "Prostitution and HIV: What You Cant Say Might Hurt You" in the Spring 2012 issue is presented.

  • Recruitment of at-risk population through network based sampling: experiences from Maharashtra IBBA Round-I survey. Deshpande, Sucheta; Kohli, Anjalee; Rathod, Sunil; Mainkar, Mandar; Kazi, Shirin; Pardeshi, Dilip; Dale, Jayesh; Aralkar, Shailaja; Panchal, Narayan; Mahajan, Uma; Paranjape, Ramesh // Indian Journal of Medical Research;Oct2012 Supplement, p36 

    Background & objectives: Respondent Driven Sampling (RDS) method is increasingly being used for surveys among hard to reach populations. It essentially relies on the networking among the target population. Key behavioural indicators, HIV and sexually transmitted infection (STI) prevalence were...

  • Prevalence and Correlates of Client-Perpetrated Violence against Female Sex Workers in 13 Mexican Cities. Semple, Shirley J.; Stockman, Jamila K.; Pitpitan, Eileen V.; Strathdee, Steffanie A.; Chavarin, Claudia V.; Mendoza, Doroteo V.; Aarons, Gregory A.; Patterson, Thomas L. // PLoS ONE;11/23/2015, Vol. 10 Issue 11, p1 

    Background: Globally, client-perpetrated violence against female sex workers (FSWs) has been associated with multiple health-related harms, including high-risk sexual behavior and increased exposure to HIV/STIs. This study examined correlates of client-perpetrated sexual, physical, and economic...

  • Police-Related Experiences and HIV Risk Among Female Sex Workers in Andhra Pradesh, India. Erausquin, Jennifer Toller; Reed, Elizabeth; Blankenship, Kim M. // Journal of Infectious Diseases;2011 Supplement 5, Vol. 204, pS1223 

    Research suggests experiences with police are related to human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) sexual risk among women working as sex workers. However, little is known about the links between specific police-related behaviors and HIV vulnerability. We examine whether 5 police-related experiences...


Read the Article


Sorry, but this item is not currently available from your library.

Try another library?
Sign out of this library

Other Topics