Factors affecting acceptance of VCT among different professional and community groups in North and South Gondar Administrative zones, north west Ethiopia
AbstractBackground: Voluntary counseling and testing (VCT) for HIV allows individuals to determine their HIV status and serve as a gateway for both HIV prevention and early access to treatment, care and support. Identifying factors associated with VCT acceptance among different professional and community groups is essential in promoting the service. Objective: The aim of this study is to assess factors that affect VCT acceptance among different professional and community groups in the north and south Gondar administrative zones of north west Ethiopia.
Methods: A cross-sectional descriptive study was undertaken among different professional and community groups in north and south Gondar administrative zones using a pre-tested structured questionnaire on a total of 460 respondents from October - December 2004.
Results: Four hundred forty people granted interviews from a total of 460 proposed study participants with a response rate of 96%. The mean age of the respondents was 27.79 years. Sixty five percent of the respondents were males and the rest were females. Eighty two percent of the respondents were willing to accept VCT services. The age range from 15-19 years was found to be positively associated with VCT acceptance (p<0.01). Results of the behavioural variables showed the effect of others (friends families, religious leaders, and couples) who were found to have statistically very significant effect towards VCT acceptance (p<0.001). The absence of community support was found to be negatively associated with VCT acceptance (p<0.01). The availability of ART was found to have positive association with acceptance of VCT (p<0.001).
Conclusion: Involving closely related people is instrumental in enhancing the social acceptance of voluntary counseling and testing and providing sustainable and reliable VCT services. Increasing access to ART services would also help in further expanding VCT services.
The Ethiopian Journal of Health Development Vol. 20(1) 2006: 24-31
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