Review Article

Behavioural interventions promoting condom use among female sex workers in sub-Saharan Africa: a systematic review

Published in: African Journal of AIDS Research
Volume 16, issue 3, 2017, pages: 257–268
DOI: 10.2989/16085906.2017.1358753
Author(s): Uchenna O OkaforDepartment of Health Promotion, the Netherlands, Rik CrutzenDepartment of Health Promotion, the Netherlands, Yauri AduakResearch Unit, Society for Family Health, Nigeria, Sylvia AdebajoHIV/AIDS Unit, Population Council, Nigeria, Hubertus W Van den BorneDepartment of Health Promotion, the Netherlands


The objective of this review was to provide an overview of behavioural interventions promoting condom use amongst female sex workers (FSW) in sub-Saharan Africa. A search of four electronic bibliographic databases from 1990 to September 2016 was carried out. The search was limited to articles published in English. Studies which evaluated behavioural interventions to increase condom use among FSWs were selected and reviewed. Data were extracted on effectiveness, condom use, intervention content, and process outcomes. A total of 20 eligible articles describing 18 interventions in sub-Saharan Africa on HIV prevention with condom use as an outcome measure were identified. Most of the behavioural interventions incorporated a combination of approaches: health education by peers, health workers and project staff, and activities by brothel owners and brothel managers. Most studies showed effectiveness of these interventions on condom use with paying clients. Five studies measuring condom use with regular non-paying partners recorded less consistent condom use with these partners. This review illustrates the existence of sufficient evidence showing the effectiveness of behavioural interventions targeting correct and consistent condom use by FSWs.

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