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CDC HIV/AIDS/Viral Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update
HIV/AIDS Diagnosis: Finger-Stick HIV Test Is Accurate and

October 31, 2003
Women's Health Weekly (09.04.03) - Friday, October 31, 2003

Alice Liu and colleagues affiliated with the Thailand Ministry of Public Health-US CDC Collaboration assessed the acceptability of a rapid finger-stick HIV test among Thai women. "We used the HemaStrip HIV-1/2 test (Saliva Diagnostic Systems, Vancouver, Wash.) in a prospective cohort study of HIV seroincidence among women in northern Thailand from 1998 to 1999," the study reported. "Nurses obtained whole-blood specimens by finger-stick testing and provided test results and counseling at each visit. Acceptability of the rapid test was assessed at the first six-month follow-up visit." Liu and her colleagues found that, "HIV-1 seroprevalence among the 804 women screened at enrollment was 3.1 percent. Positive rapid test results from 25 women were confirmed by enzyme immunoassay and Western blot analysis using serum obtained by venipuncture. Of the 741 women who returned for follow-up, 56 percent preferred specimen collection by finger-stick testing to venipuncture, 80 percent preferred immediate rather than delayed results, 79 percent preferred the rapid test method to typical testing methods, and 97 percent were satisfied with the test method used." The report, "Rapid Whole-Blood Finger-Stick Test for HIV Antibody: Performance and Acceptability Among Women in Northern Thailand," appeared in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes (2003;33(2):194-198).