User acceptability and feasibility of self-testing with HIV rapid tests

Vernon J. Lee, Soon Choon Tan, Arul Earnest, Peck Suet Seong, Hiok Hee Tan, Yee Sin Leo

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61 Citations (Scopus)


OBJECTIVE: Because HIV rapid tests are considered for self-testing, this study aims to determine the user acceptability and feasibility of self-testing. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was performed on 350 systematically sampled participants across 2 Singapore HIV testing centers using the Abbott Determine HIV 1/2 blood sample rapid test (Abbott Laboratories, Abbott Park, IL). Participants were surveyed on knowledge of and attitudes toward rapid testing. To determine interrater agreement between self-testing and trained personnel testing, participants performed self-testing with visual instructions, followed by trained personnel testing. Ability to identify test outcomes was determined through interpretation of sample test results. RESULTS: Eighty-nine percent of participants preferred testing in private, but most indicated that confidential counseling by trained counselors was necessary. Almost 90% found the kit easy to use and instructions easy to understand. Nevertheless, 85% failed to perform all steps correctly, especially blood sampling, and 56% had invalid results because of incorrect test performance. Interrater agreement between results from self-testing and trained personnel testing had a κ value of 0.28. Twelve percent could not correctly determine results using sample tests, including 2% and 7% who read positive and negative samples, respectively, incorrectly. CONCLUSIONS: A substantial proportion could not perform self-testing or identify outcomes. Self-testing with the Determine HIV 1/2 kit in Singapore should be deferred.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)449-453
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Attitude
  • Diagnostic tests
  • Epidemiology
  • Feasibility
  • HIV
  • Knowledge

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