We assessed HIV testing trends among high school students and young adults.
We analyzed National Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS) and Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data to assess HIV testing prevalence among high school students and young adults aged 18 to 24, respectively. Logistic regression models for each sample stratified by gender and race/ethnicity were estimated to assess trends in the percentages ever tested, with year as a continuous linear variable. We report absolute differences in HIV testing prevalence and model results for 2005–2013 (YRBS) and 2011–2013 (BRFSS).
During the study periods, an average of 22% of high school students (17% of male and 27% of female students) who ever had sexual intercourse and 33% of young adults reported ever being tested for HIV. Among high school students, no change was detected in HIV testing prevalence during 2005–2013, regardless of gender or race/ethnicity. Among young adult males, an average of 27% had ever been tested, and no significant changes were detected overall or by race/ethnicity during 2011–2013. Significant decreases in testing prevalence were detected during 2011–2013 among young adult females overall (from 42.4% to 39.5%), young adult white females (from 37.2% to 33.9%), and young adult black females (from 68.9% to 59.9%).
HIV testing prevalence was low among high school students and young adults. No increase in testing among young adult males and decreased testing among young adult black females is concerning given their higher risk of HIV infection.