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Medical Sociology 2017 :, HIV RISK AMONG MEN WHO HAVE SEX WITH MEN (MSM) IN HUNGARY
Research was conducted among gay and bisexual men in Hungary during 2011 to try to learn why Hungarians have a relatively low rate of HIV/AIDS in their country. It was initially hypothesized that men who have sex with men in Hungary have sex with condoms with non-Hungarians, but sex without condoms with other Hungarian men, creating a functional “firewall” keeping most HIV/AIDS infection out of Hungary. While our hypothesis was inconclusive, likely due to small sample size in this qualitative study, it examined key aspects of Hungarian gay male culture. Cultures and subcultural differences are important in understanding Hungarian gay male behavior. There was an emphasis on romance and monogamy as an ideal, the importance of personal reputation, a lack of a strong gay community, failure to use condoms when in love, sexual fantasies where condoms were irrelevant, infrequent HIV testing but accurate knowledge of safer sex. One possible solution would be to encourage the use of Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis (PrEP), a daily pill which reduces the risk of HIV infection, among Hungarian MSM who refuses to use condoms.
Douglas A. Feldman
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