Objectives: This study aimed at determining whether HIV positive adolescents disclose their HIV status to sexual partners, identifying factors associated with sexual activity among them, finding out if they practice safe sex and determining age at first sex debut among them.
Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional study with an analytical component. Quantitative data was collected from a probability selected sample of 330 HIV positive adolescents aged 14- 19 years using interview schedules and qualitative data from 4 key informants. Data was analysed using both quantitative and qualitative methods.
Results: Overall, 47.7% of adolescents living with HIV have ever been in a sexual relationship with a higher likelihood among females (RR 1.51; p =0.0014). Those in urban areas had a higher likelihood of not engaging in sexual relationship than those from rural areas (RR 0.59; p =0.0032). Over 35% of the respondents were sexually active with females showing a greater likelihood (RR 1.65; p =0.0035). More to that those older than 17 years had a higher likelihood of being sexually active than those 17 years and younger (RR 3.64; p- value =0.0000). About 66.7% had disclosed their HIV status to sexual partners, 84.3% were of the same HIV status as their sexual partners (p =0.002). 36% of those who had not disclosed to their partners felt guilty. Males had a higher likelihood of having sexual partners of the same HIV status (RR 1.39; p =0.02). Only 41.9% used condoms during last sexual activity and 87.2% had one sexual partner. About 33.6% had first sexual debut when they were below 15years with (females 25.2%, males 8.4%, p =0.87).
Conclusions: Adolescents living with HIV were sexually active especially females, more in rural areas. There was low condom use which was likely to propagate the spread of HIV and AIDS in Uganda.
Keywords: Adolescents living with HIV; Sexual practices of adolescents living with HIV; Disclosure of HIV positive status to sexual partner; adolescents living with HIV in Uganda; Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health; Risky sexual practices