HIV Status in Zanzibar - Page 4
Female sex work is Zanzibar is more common in Unguja than Pemba, and is often associated with the tourism industry areas, though significant trading of sex also occurs in the local population. Female sex workers typically range in age from 15 – mid 50s and the median age of women selling sex is in the middle 20s. The majority of female sex workers report earning less than 120,000 TZS monthly, with 25.6% reporting a personal income of less than 50,000 TZS. Only 14.4% of female sex workers in the 2007 IBBS had a monthly income of more than 200,000 TZS. The majority of female sex workers (73.9%) earn their income primarily from sex work while 20.6% of female sex workers also report earning income through private income generating activities. According to the 2007 IBBS survey the HIV prevalence among female sex workers in Zanzibar is 10.8%. The prevalence of Hepatitis B virus is 5.1 percent; Hepatitis C virus - 1.9 percent; and Syphilis – 1.3 percent.
HIV prevalence is higher among female sex workers reporting less education and selling sex for a longer period: 16.7% of female sex workers who completed 1 to 7 years of school were HIV-infected compared with 3.1% of those who completed 8 to 10 years of school. HIV prevalence was highest among female sex workers who reported selling sex for 10 years or more (28.6%), compared with that of female sex workers who reported selling sex for three years or less (3.6%).
Disconnect between high levels of HIV related knowledge among Zanzibaris and high risk sexual behaviour
THMIS documented high levels of HIV awareness among the studied populations in Unguja and Pemba Islands. HIV related awareness levels in both men and women in Zanzibar is about 99 percent. Despite this, less than 50 percent of both men and women in Zanzibar knew condoms are a HIV prevention intervention/commodity while only 32.9 percent of men and 20.3 percent of women claimed to have used a condom in the last high risk sexual encounter. Non consistent and incorrect use of condoms by those engaged in risk sex behaviour might fuel the epidemic in Zanzibar.