Knowledge of students training to be health care professionals about aids transmission

Background: Knowledge of how the HIV virus is transmitted and how we can protect ourselves against it will lead individuals to adopt appropriate sexual behavior, thus preventing transmission of HIV. An evaluation of this knowledge in a young population of reproductive age is fundamental when drawing up and assessing health education programs.Goal: Assessing the knowledge of students at the health care departments of the Athens ΗΤΕΙ on AIDS transmission and prevention.Material and Method: 249 students of health care professions at the Athens ΗΤΕΙ participated in the study, their average age being 21.1±2.45 years. An anonymous, structured questionnaire comprising 61 questions was used, which subjects filled out themselves.Results: 96.1% of the population stated that they had been informed about AIDS and the overwhelming majority (94.2%) was aware of the hematogenous transmission of AIDS, while a large percentage answered that there is no cure, though this reply was influenced by how many years the respondents had studied. 90% of sexually active students thought that those afflicted should say so openly, and they were also better informed about the lack of a cure for the disease.Conclusions: The population studied seemed to be aware of quite a few details concerning AIDS. The quantity and accuracy of this knowledge was influenced by various parameters, i.e. how many years respondents had studied and whether they were sexually active. In general, the sample population seemed open to information, as respondents’ attitudes changed progressively in the course of their studies as a result of the knowledge imparted to them. We believe that by drawing up and implementing appropriate Health Education Programs we can contribute to the adoption of more conscious attitudes and safer behavior.

Author(s): Roupa Zoe

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