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Awareness, knowledge and perception of HIV/AIDS and sexual behaviour amongst pre-clinical, medical students in a Nigerian university

Awareness, knowledge and perception of HIV/AIDS and sexual behaviour amongst pre-clinical, medical students in a Nigerian university

Nigerian Journal of Medicine 21(3): 272-276

Youths are the most vulnerable group affected by the HIV pandemic and its spread is most rapid amongst them. Their knowledge and awareness about this disease could transform to positive habits which could stem the tide of the pandemic. This study therefore set out to find out about the knowledge and awareness of HIV/AIDS and sexual behaviour amongst pre-clinical medical student in a Nigerian University. This was a cross sectional descriptive study carried out in the University of Uyo Medical School. Structured questionnaire was administered to consenting students to gather relevant information about socio-demographic characteristic, HIV/AIDS awareness, sexual behaviour, willingness to screen for HIV/AIDS amongst others. One hundred and fourteen students completed the questionnaire. Majority (82) were males, with most of them aged between 16-24 years. All of them (100%) had heard about HIV/IADS, before, and majority heard it from the first time through the electronic media. Majority (83.9%) could identify all the routes of transmission of HIV/AIDS while all respondents identified HIV virus as being. Ninety five percent agreed there is no cure for the disease. Thirty seven percent of then were sexually active with the mean age of sexual debut being 17.2 +/- 3.95 years. Only 70% of the sexually active respondent admitted using a condom during sexual intercourse. Majority (94.3%) agreed to undergo voluntary counselling and testing with 73% saying they will seek medical attention if infected. Only 40.2% of the respondent agreed to disclose their status if they test positive to the virus. Awareness and knowledge among certain aspects of HIV/AIDS amongst pre-clinical medical students in Uyo is high. However certain risk behaviour like no consistent use of condom during sexual intercourse still persist with many students not readil accepting to disclose their HIV status if they test positive to the virus. We advocate increased awareness, sensitization and education of the entire populace about HIV/AIDS. Government should also legislate laws to prevent discrimination, stigmatization and victimization of those affected by the virus.

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Accession: 051736686

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PMID: 23304919

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