Perceptions of door-to-door HIV counselling and testing in Botswana

Karen Kroeger, Allan Taylor, Heather Marlow, Douglas T. Fleming, Vanessa Beyleveld, Mary Grace Alwano, Mabel Tebogo Kejelepula, Kentsenao Busang Chilume, Dawn K. Smith, Thierry H. Roels, Peter H. Kilmarx

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Prevalence of HIV infection in Botswana is among the highest in the world, at 23.9% of 15 - 49-year-olds. Most HIV testing is conducted in voluntary counselling and testing centres or medical settings. Improved access to testing is urgently needed. This qualitative study assessed and documented community perceptions about the concept of door-to-door HIV counselling and rapid testing in two of the highest-prevalence districts of Botswana. Community members associated many positive benefits with home-based, door-to-door HIV testing, including convenience, confidentiality, capacity to increase the number of people tested, and opportunities to increase knowledge of HIV transmission, prevention and care through provision of correct information to households. Community members also saw the intervention as increasing opportunities to engage and influence family members and to role model positive behaviours. Participants also perceived social risks and dangers associated with home-based testing including the potential for conflict, coercion, stigma, and psychological distress within households. Community members emphasised the need for individual and community preparation, including procedures to protect confidentiality, provisions for psychological and social support, and links to appropriate services for HIV-positive persons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-178
Number of pages8
JournalSahara J
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Botswana
  • Counselling and testing
  • Home-based HIV testing
  • Qualitative research

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Immunology and Allergy


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