Alarmingly High HIV Prevalence Among Adolescent and Young Men Who have Sex with Men (MSM) in Urban Indonesia.

Journal Article (Journal Article)

Indonesia's HIV epidemic is concentrated among key populations. While prevalence among men who have sex with men (MSM) is high, transmission among young MSM (15-24-years-old) remains poorly understood. We conducted a respondent driven sampling survey of 211 young MSM in urban Bandung, Indonesia in 2018-2019 to estimate HIV prevalence and associated risk factors. Thirty percent of young MSM were HIV antibody positive. This is nearly 100-fold greater than Indonesia's population prevalence and sevenfold higher than average estimates for young MSM across Asia and the Pacific Region. Individual risk factors associated with HIV infection were being 20-24 years old, having a steady partner and preferring the receptive position during sex. Issues of stigma, discrimination and social exclusion were common. Few young MSM who were open with friends and family members about their sexual identity. Among those that were, close to half reported experiencing feelings of aversion from these groups. Wider structural factors that reduce social tolerance, restrict the rights of young MSM and compel concealment of sexual identity are likely to fuel high-risk behaviors and limit access to essential testing care and support services including pre-exposure prophylaxis which is not yet widely available. Urgent health, social, legal and political actions are required to respond to these factors and reduce the disproportionate contribution of young MSM to Indonesia's HIV epidemic.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Johnston, LG; Soe, P; Widihastuti, AS; Camellia, A; Putri, TA; Rakhmat, FF; Nurwandani, RA; Prabhu, SM; Sulaiman, N; Pronyk, PM

Published Date

  • November 2021

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 25 / 11

Start / End Page

  • 3687 - 3694

PubMed ID

  • 34143341

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC8560664

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1573-3254

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 1090-7165

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1007/s10461-021-03347-0


  • eng