Nurses perceptions about their behavioural counselling for HIV/AIDS, STIs and TB in eThekwini Municipality clinics KwAZulu-Natal, South Africa
Background: HIV and AIDS, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and tuberculosis (TB) are common co-infections in South Africa, and constitute major public health problems. Nurses have frequent contact with HIV positive and TB co-infected patients, their counselling behaviour being influenced by knowledge about counselling as well as their beliefs, attitudes and perceptions about barriers to counselling.
Purpose: The purpose of the survey was to assess the knowledge, attitude and beliefs of nurses about behavioural counselling for HIV and AIDS, STIs and TB (HAST) in three areas of the eThekwini Municipality.
Results: This was a quantitative descriptive cross sectional study, with stratified sampling being used to select 87 nurses from 24 PHC facilities who completed self-administered questionnaires. The most significant factors associated with the knowledge, attitude and beliefs of nurses about counselling behaviour were their age and level of education. Nurses were well informed about counselling behaviour (mean scores 4.1/5). However, the potential barriers to implementing effective counselling behaviour included their negative perceptions about counselling in HAST.
Conclusion: There is an urgent need for further studies to explore barriers to counselling behaviour and how these can be addressed by the nurses and their managers.
Keywords: Counselling behaviour, HCT, PICT, HIV, STIs & TB
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