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Offering HIV testing to pregnant women increased test uptake but not anxiety

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Question Which methods of offering voluntary HIV testing to pregnant women increase test uptake (ie, number of women who take the test) and acceptability?


Randomised controlled trial.


Hospital antenatal clinic in Edinburgh, UK.


3505 pregnant women who had their first clinic visit from May 1996 to February 1997. Women were excluded from the study if they were known to be HIV positive or had language difficulties. A total of 3024 women (86%) participated.


Women were allocated to 1 of 4 intervention groups, which varied by how HIV testing was offered: an HIV specific leaflet with comprehensive (n=519) or minimal discussion with a midwife (n=495); or …

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  • Source of funding: NHS Research and Development Health Technology Assessment Programme.

  • For correspondence: Dr W M Simpson, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Centre for Reproductive Biology, University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh EH3 9EW, UK. Fax +44 (0)131 229 2408.