Reducing HIV-related stigma among traders in model markets in Lagos, Nigeria through HIV education.
Background: HIV/AIDS is a major Public health problem in Nigeria where the National seroprevalence rate is 4.1%. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of health education on knowledge of HIV and the stigmatization of people living with HIV/AIDS among traders in model markets in Lagos State.
Methodology: This study was a quasi-experimental study. The intervention and control markets were selected by simple random sampling method while systematic sampling method was used to select the participants in each market. A total of 400 participants were recruited into this study. The study phases were a baseline survey in both markets, a health education programme in the intervention market and a post-intervention survey in both markets. Epi Info 2002 (Windows version 3.5.1) statistical software was used for data analysis.
Results: After the intervention, the proportion of respondents who had correct knowledge of HIV/AIDS increased significantly by 27.9% in the intervention group (p<0.001). A slight increase (3.6%) was also observed in the control group but this was not significant. The proportion of traders in the intervention group who had a positive attitude towards PLWHA also increased significantly by 12.6% (p=0.006). However in the control group, there was no increase in the proportion of traders who had a positive attitude towards PLWHA.
Conclusion: Health education significantly increased knowledge of HIV/AIDS and reduced HIV-related stigma among the traders. Periodic HIV/AIDS education should be provided for the traders. Further research is recommended to assess sustained changes in stigma related attitude over time.
Keywords: HIV, AIDS, PLWHA, traders, Preintervention and postintervention.