Transgender Women Experiencing Homelessness - National HIV Behavioral Surveillance Among Transgender Women, Seven Urban Areas, United States, 2019-2020

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Transgender women experience high prevalence of homelessness, which can affect their likelihood of acquiring HIV infection and can lead to poor medical outcomes. CDC analyzed data from the National HIV Behavioral Surveillance Among Transgender Women to identify whether personal characteristics and social factors affecting transgender women were associated with duration of homelessness during the past 12 months. Longer duration and chronic homelessness might indicate greater unmet needs, which increases their likelihood for acquiring HIV infection. Ordinal logistic regression was conducted to calculate adjusted prevalence odds ratios and 95% CIs for transgender women from seven urban areas in the United States experiencing homelessness 30-365 nights, 1-29 nights, and zero nights during the past 12 months. Among 1,566 transgender women, 9% reported 1-29 nights homeless and 31% reported 30-365 nights homeless during the past 12 months. Among participants who reported physical intimate partner violence or forced sex, 50% and 47%, respectively, reported experiencing 30-365 nights homeless. Furthermore, 55% who had been evicted or denied housing because of their gender identity and 58% who had been incarcerated during the past year experienced 30-365 nights homeless. The odds of transgender women experiencing longer duration of homelessness was associated with being younger and having a disability; higher psychological distress scores were associated with longer duration of homelessness. Analysis of social determinants of health found transgender women experiencing longer homelessness to be less educated, living below the Federal poverty level, and having lower social support. Therefore, focusing on HIV prevention and interventions addressing housing instability to reduce the duration of homelessness among transgender women is important. Further, integrating housing services with behavioral health services and clinical care, specifically designed for transgender women, could reduce HIV acquisition risk and improve HIV infection outcomes.

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