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Behavioral Predictors Associated With COVID-19 Vaccination and Infection Among Men Who Have Sex With Men in Korea
Minsoo Jung
J Prev Med Public Health. 2024;57(1):28-36.   Published online November 27, 2023
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDF
This study investigated the impact of socioeconomic factors and sexual orientation-related attributes on the rates of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination and infection among men who have sex with men (MSM).
A web-based survey, supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea, was conducted among paying members of the leading online portal for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer and questioning (LGBTQ+) community in Korea. The study participants were MSM living in Korea (n=942). COVID-19 vaccination and infection were considered dependent variables, while sexual orientation-related characteristics and adherence to non-pharmacological intervention (NPI) practices served as primary independent variables. To ensure analytical precision, nested logistic regression analyses were employed. These were further refined by dividing respondents into 4 categories based on sexual orientation and disclosure (or “coming-out”) status.
Among MSM, no definitive association was found between COVID-19 vaccination status and factors such as socioeconomic or sexual orientation-related attributes (with the latter including human immunodeficiency virus [HIV] status, sexual orientation, and disclosure experience). However, key determinants influencing COVID-19 infection were identified. Notably, people living with HIV (PLWH) exhibited a statistically significant predisposition towards COVID-19 infection. Furthermore, greater adherence to NPI practices among MSM corresponded to a lower likelihood of COVID-19 infection.
This study underscores the high susceptibility to COVID-19 among PLWH within the LGBTQ+ community relative to their healthy MSM counterparts. Consequently, it is crucial to advocate for tailored preventive strategies, including robust NPIs, to protect these at-risk groups. Such measures are essential in reducing the disparities that may emerge in a post–COVID-19 environment.
Korean summary
한국에서 남성 동성애자의 코로나-19 예방접종과 그들의 사회경제적 지위 또는 성적 지향과 관련된 요인 사이에는 명확한 연관성이 없었지만, HIV에 감염된 남성 동성애자는 코로나-19의 감염 위험이 유의미하게 높았다. 또한, 남성 동성애자의 비약물적 중재 실천율이 높을수록 그들의 코로나-19 감염 가능성은 감소하는 경향이 있었다. 이 연구는 LGBTQ+ 커뮤니티 내의 HIV 양성 동성애자와 같은 취약한 집단을 보호하고 포스트 코로나-19 환경에서 성 소수자 간의 건강 격차를 줄이기 위한 강력한 맞춤형 예방 전략의 필요성을 강조한다.
Key Message
While there were no clear associations between COVID-19 vaccination and socioeconomic or sexual orientation-related factors among men who have sex with men (MSM) in Korea, individuals living with HIV (PLWH) had a significantly higher risk of COVID-19 infection. Additionally, greater adherence to non-pharmacological intervention (NPI) practices was linked to a reduced likelihood of COVID-19 infection among MSM. This study emphasizes the need for tailored preventive strategies, including robust NPIs, to protect at-risk groups like PLWH within the LGBTQ+ community and reduce health disparities in a post-COVID-19 environment.
Comparison of Sexual Risky Factors of Men Who Have Sex With Men and Sex-buying Men as Groups Vulnerable to Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Minsoo Jung, Joongyub Lee, Dong Seok Kwon, Byung-Joo Park
J Prev Med Public Health. 2012;45(3):156-163.   Published online May 31, 2012
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  • 9 Crossref
AbstractAbstract PDF

It is necessary to examine groups carrying out sexually risky behavior because the prevalence of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is high among them. In this study, the prevalence of STDs among homosexuals and sex-buying men in South Korea was investigated, along with their sexual risk factors.


Men who have sex with men (MSMs, n=108) were recruited in Seoul and Busan by applying the time location sampling method, while sex-buying men (n=118) were recruited from a john school in Gyeonggi province, the suburbs of Seoul. Dependent variables included past or present infection with syphilis, Chlamydia, gonorrhea, and human immunodeficiency virus. Independent variables included health behavior, social support, sexual behavior, and safe sex.


It was found that when the MSMs were non-drunk while having sexual intercourse (odds ratio [OR], 0.132), they showed a higher STD infection rate when they had a higher number of anal sex partners (OR, 5.872), rarely used condoms (OR, 1.980), had lower self-efficacy (OR, 0.229), and were more anxious about becoming infected with an STD (OR, 3.723). However, the men who paid for sex showed high STD infections when they had more sex partners (OR, 2.286) and lower education levels (OR, 3.028).


STD infections among the two groups were high when they were engaged with many sex partners and not having protected sex. In other words, there was a gap in risky sex behavior within such groups, which was significantly related to the possibility of developing an STD. Therefore, the preventive intervention against STDs for these groups needs to be expanded to include management of sex behaviors.



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  • Differences in Risky Sexual Behavior According to Sexual Orientation in Korean Adolescents
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JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health