This study examined two issues of current
importance for AIDS prevention in Uganda: the frequency of multiple
sexual partnerships, and whether optimistic perceptions about the
severity of AIDS are associated with riskier sexual behavior.
men and women ages 20-39 from two poor neighborhoods of Kampala were
interviewed about their sexual behavior over the prior 6 months and
about other partners during current relationships. They also completed a
7-item scale measuring perception of the severity of HIV/AIDS.
of men and 2.9% of women reported ongoing concurrent partnerships;
28.8% and 6.8% reported more than one partner in the past six months.
22.2% of men and 32.4% of women believed their partner had had other
partners during the relationship. Overall, 56.1% of men and 57.0% of
women reported potentially being involved in a multiple or concurrent
partnership. Respondents rating AIDS as more severe were more likely to
Multiple sexual partnerships
may be more common in Uganda than generally supposed, and optimism about
the severity of AIDS is associated with having multiple partners. These
findings have important implications for HIV/AIDS epidemiology and