Unprotected sexual practice with multiple partners is identified as the greatest risk factor for transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) in Sub Saharan Africa and it is a public health concern among people infected with HIV. However, due to the focus of HIV prevention efforts was largely on people uninfected with HIV, people on anti-retroviral therapy (ART) were not addressed by prevention strategies in Ethiopia, particularly at the study area. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine prevalence of unprotected sexual practice and associated factors among people who were on ART at Public Health facilities of Arba Minch town. Facility based cross-sectional study was undertaken on a sample of 513 patients who were on Anti-Retroviral Therapy in public Health Facilities of Arba Minch town. The study was conducted from January to March, 2014 by asking participants without any interval. Interviewer-based questionnaire was used to collect the data. Statistical package for social science (SPSS), version 20 software was used to perform descriptive and logistic regression analysis. Statistical significance was declared for predictor variables at p-value less than 0.05. Among 513 participants who were currently sexually active, 267 (52%) practiced unprotected sexual practice within 3 months prior to the study period. Monthly income of less than 500 Ethiopian birr, AOR and 95% CI were 4.69: 3.5-11.87; non specified monthly income, AOR and 95%CI were 6.74: 2.14-21.26; less than one year duration since ART started, AOR and 95%CI were 5.5:2.08-14.5; lack of discussion about safe sex with partners, AOR and 95% CI were 7.03:4.20-11.80 and unknown partner’s sero-status for HIV, AOR and 95%CI were 2.76:1.16-6.53, times more likely to practice unprotected sexual practice as compared to their counterparts. Prevalence of unprotected sexual practice was high. Low monthly income, unknown partner’s HIV sero-status, less than one year duration on anti-retro viral treatment (ART) and lack of discussion about safe sex with sexual partner were positively associated with unprotected sexual practice. Health education at different level and local media should give due attention on partners testing, open discussion about safe sex, and positive living information for recently enrolled ART patients. Income generating activities should be planned by carefully identifying those patients with low income status.
Key words: Unprotected sexual practice, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), anti-retro viral treatment (ART).
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