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Young Women's Marital Status and HIV Risk in Sub-Saharan Africa: Evidence from Lesotho, Swaziland and Zimbabwe

  • Christobel Asiedu

    ()

    (Louisiana Tech University)

  • Elizabeth Asiedu

    ()

    (University of Kansas)

  • Francis Owusu

    ()

Registered author(s):

    This paper examines whether marriage increases the risk of HIV infection among women aged 15-24 in Lesotho, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. We find that in all the three countries, the risk of infection is significantly lower for never-married young women than ever-married young women; however, the difference in risk disappears when we control for age, educational attainment, household wealth, and area of residence. Thus, our result highlights the importance of socio-economic and demographic factors in analyzing the link between marital status and HIV risk among young women. Particularly, our findings show that age and education play a crucial role in determining the level of HIV/AIDS risk for young women. The result also implies that marriage as an institution does not necessarily elevate the risk of HIV infection among young women.

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    Article provided by African Finance and Economic Association in its journal Journal of African Development.

    Volume (Year): 12 (2010)
    Issue (Month): 2 ()
    Pages: 33-46

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    Handle: RePEc:afe:journl:v:12:y:2010:i:2:p:33-46
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