Objectives: Levels of knowledge about the sexual transmission of Zika virus are consistently low in populations at risk of a mosquito-borne outbreak, including among women of childbearing age and women who are pregnant or intend to become pregnant. We investigated the effectiveness of sources of public health messaging about sexual transmission to women who are pregnant or intend to become pregnant in Arizona. Methods: In 2017, we conducted an Arizona-statewide survey 15 months after the initial release of US guidelines on sexual transmission of Zika virus. We used Poisson regression, adjusting for demographic factors, to estimate the likelihood among women who were pregnant or intended to become pregnant of knowing that Zika virus is sexually transmitted relative to other women of childbearing age. We used multinomial logistic regression models to explore associations with most used health information sources, either in person (eg, medical providers) or online (eg, Facebook), categorized by extent of dependability. Results: Women who were pregnant or intended to become pregnant had similarly poor knowledge of the sexual transmission of Zika virus as compared with other women of childbearing age (adjusted prevalence ratio = 1.14 [95% CI, 0.83-1.55]). Only about one-third of all respondents reported knowledge of sexual transmission. Reliance on high- vs low-dependability information sources, whether in person or online, did not predict the extent of Zika virus knowledge among women who were pregnant or intended to become pregnant. Conclusion: As late as the second year of local Zika virus transmission in the United States, in 2017, women in Arizona were not receiving sufficient information about sexual transmission, even though it was available. To prepare for possible future outbreaks, research should explore which aspects of Zika information campaigns were ineffective or inefficient.
- Zika virus
- health information sourcing preferences
- sexual transmission of Zika virus
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health