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Table 4 Relative importance (relative to the most important, getting an importance of 100) of explanatory variables with ‘ever refused condoms’ and ‘ever used condoms’ as response variables (order according to the importance of ‘ever use condoms’)

From: Predictors of condom use and refusal among the population of Free State province in South Africa

Variable Ever used condom Ever refused condom
Perceived need for condoms 100 0
Knowledge about correct use of condoms 43.6 0
Availability 39.36 0
Age 37.25 5.25
Marital status 17.58 0
Employment 4.01 0.24
Affordability 1.49 0
Education 1.25 1.05
Knowledge about HIV status of partner 0.12 4.35
Presence of stigma on condom 0 100
Presence of sexual risk behaviour 0 37.52
Knowledge about own HIV status 0 12.01
Knowledge about condoms 0 9.49
Knowledge about HIV 0 3.81
Gender 0 1.9
Ethnic group 0 0
Source of condoms 0 0
Belief that condoms can prevent HIV 0 0
Residence type 0 0
  1. Note: Importance, for a particular variable, is the sum, across all nodes in the tree, of the improvement scores between this variable and the best splitter at a particular node. This means that a variable that does not occur in the tree because always “second best” and not selected as the main splitter, can occur as very important.