Background: To assess attitudes about STI screening on a mobile health van.
Methods: Confidential, written questionnaires were offered to men and women (≥14 years) visiting a van during a family-oriented community event. Questionnaires assessed (1) acceptability of van-based STI testing given five different turn-around times, (2) acceptability of self-collected samples for STI testing on a van, doctor’s office, and home, and (3) perceived accuracy of rapid versus standard (turn-around time 2-14 days) STI tests. Acceptability was rated using a 5-point Likert-like scale (1=very acceptable, 5=very unacceptable). Analyses included descriptive statistics and t-tests.
Results: Twenty women and 11 men completed questionnaires. A majority reported that getting tested on a van was acceptable for each of the five different turn-around times; the proportion reporting that getting tested for an STI on a van was somewhat to very acceptable increased with decreasing turn-around time: 4-14 days (40%), 1-3 days (57%), more than 2 hours but on the same day (70%), 1-2 hours (80%), <1 hour (93%). Women rated van and office as equally acceptable locations to collect urine (van: median (M) =1.58, office: M=1.32, p=ns) and vaginal samples (van: M=1.45, office: M=1.30, p=ns). Van was more acceptable than home to collect urine (home: M=2.11, p=.05) and vaginal samples (home: M=2.17, p=<.01). Men rated van and home as equally acceptable locations to collect urine (van: M=2.38, home: M=2.38, p=ns) and penile samples (van: M=2.31, home: M=2.62, p=ns). Van, however, was less acceptable than office to collect urine (office: M=1.68, p=.02) and penile samples (office: M=1.77, p=.05). All respondents perceived rapid testing to be either as accurate (men: 78%, women: 79%) or more accurate (men: 22%, women: 21%) than standard testing.
Conclusions: STI screening on health vans using rapid or standard tests with urine or self-collected swabs may be accepted by community-event attendees.