Reasons for, and factors associated with, positive HIV retesting: a cross-sectional study in Eswatini

Quint Olislagers, Frank van Leth, Fortunate Shabalala, Njabuliso Dlamini, Njabulo Simelane, Nelisiwe Masilela, Gabriela B. Gomez, Christopher Pell, Eva Vernooij, Ria Reis, Marjan Molemans

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Eswatini has a high HIV prevalence but has made progress towards improving HIV-status awareness, ART uptake and viral suppression. However, there is still a delay in ART initiation, which could partly be attributed to positive HIV-retesting. This study examines reasons for, and factors associated with, positive HIV-retesting among MaxART participants in Eswatini. Data from 601 participants is included in this cross-sectional study. Descriptive statistics and logistic regressions were used. Of the participants, 32.8% has ever retested after a previous positive result. Most participants who retested did this because they could not accept their results (61.9% of all retesters). Other main reasons are related to external influences, gender or the progression of their HIV infection (respectively 18.3%, 10.2%, and 6.1% of all retesters). Participants without a current partner and participants with less time since their first positive test have lower odds of retesting. To decrease retesting and reduce the delay in ART initiation resulting from it, efforts could be made on increasing the acceptance of positive HIV results. Providing more information on the process of testing and importance of early ART initiation, could be part of the solution.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalAIDS Care - Psychological and Socio-Medical Aspects of AIDS/HIV
Early online date30 Nov 2022
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 30 Nov 2022


  • Eswatini
  • HIV
  • repeat testing
  • retesting
  • test-and-treat

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