Assessment of risk behaviors for HIV infection among psychiatric inpatients

J. Volavka, A. Convit, J. O'Donnell, R. Douyon, C. Evangelista, P. Czobor

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63 Citations (Scopus)


A 13-item questionnaire was constructed to assess risk factors for HIV infection among 476 patients newly admitted over a one-year period to a state psychiatric hospital in New York City. Because psychopathology can affect patients' self-reports, the validity of the instrument was established by HIV antibody tests in a subset of 352 patients. Results of the questionnaire indicated that the 352 patients were almost equally divided between the high- risk and low-risk categories. HIV seroprevalence was .6 percent among the low-risk patients, but 14.4 percent among the high-risk patients. The findings suggest that a screening program to detect HIV-positive patients should be undertaken in this population, that it should be focused on the high-risk subgroup, and that the questionnaire can be used to define that subgroup. However, results of the study may not generalize to other geographic areas.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)482-485
Number of pages4
JournalHospital and Community Psychiatry
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Jan 1 1992

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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