Publications & Reports

Qualitative exploration of HIV-related sexual behaviours and multiple partnerships among Chinese men who have sex with men living in a rural area of Yunnan Province, China.

Eric P F Chow, Liangmin Gao, Fung Kuen Koo, Liang Chen, Xiaoxing Fu, Jun Jing, David P Wilson, Lei Zhang
The Kirby Institute, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia.


BACKGROUND: The HIV epidemic has been spreading rapidly among men who have sex with men (MSM) in China. The present study explored the pattern of HIV-related high-risk sexual practices among MSM in a rural Chinese setting. METHODS: Data were collected by semistructured in-depth interviews conducted among 15 MSM in Yuxi Prefecture, Yunnan Province, China. Fifteen respondents were recruited through a local non-governmental organisation via purposive sampling. Thematic analysis was used. RESULTS: Technological changes, risk behaviours, social stigma and high migration rates have played a significant role in the spread of HIV among MSM in rural China. The Internet has become the primary channel for soliciting casual sex partners in the MSM community. Bisexuality and having concurrent and multiple sexual partners were common among rural MSM. A large number of sexual partners and low condom use in all MSM partnership types were noted. Due to Chinese cultural traditions and social stigma, Chinese rural MSM were reluctant to disclose their homosexuality. Rural-to-urban migrant MSM were often engaged in the commercial sex trade. CONCLUSIONS: Rural MSM is a distinctive and complex population with multiple identities in China. Concurrent multiple sexual partnerships, high mobility and low disclosure rate are the major challenges for HIV prevention and intervention programs in MSM.


  • Journal: Sexual Health
  • Published: 01/12/2013
  • Volume: 10
  • Issue: 6
  • Pagination: 533-540