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A Survey Of HIV-Related Knowledge And Attitude Among Dental Nursing Students In South Western Nigeria

C Azodo
A Umoh
E Ezeja
M Ukpebor


Objective: To assess HIV-related knowledge and attitude among dental nursing students in South Western Nigeria.
Methods: A descriptive cross-sectional survey of the entire 97 final year dental nursing students from 4 colleges of
health technology located in South Western Nigeria was conducted in University of Benin Teaching Hospital during their external clinical posting between June 2006 and June 2007. A
self-administered questionnaire elicited information on demography, HIV/AIDS knowledge, source of information,
interpersonal communication concerning HIV/AIDS, attitudes towards HIV testing, occupational risk perception and
willingness to care for HIV patients.
Results: Response rate was 91.8% (89/97). About three quarter (73%) was in 21-25 years age group. Male: Female ratio was approximately 1:12. The respondents’ overall mean HIV/AIDS
knowledge score was 13.2±1.8 out of 16 points. Level of knowledge was influenced by marital status, state of origin and sources of information (p<0.05). Misconceptions about
transmission by mosquito bite (29.2%) and symptomatology (48.3%) existed among respondents. Fifty-five (61.8%)
want HIV patients quarantined to prevent spread. The leading source of information was the electronic media 68(76.4%); minor source was the internet 7(7.9%). Interpersonal
conversation on HIV/AIDS-related issues was commonly with
classmates/friends (62.9%). Majority (86%) favoured compulsory HIV testing for dental nursing students. Over fourfifth (88.6%) expressed willingness to render care to HIV infected patient. Fifty-one (57.3%) expressed worry
about HIV contagion through occupational exposure.
Conclusion: Dental nursing students constitute a useful public HIV education resource but they lack in-depth knowledge of the subject. Comprehensive training to clarify existing misconceptions and reduce discriminatory behaviour is recommended.

Key words: HIV, knowledge, attitude, dental nursing students, South Western

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eISSN: 0795-0268
print ISSN: 0795-0268