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Knowledge, Attitude and Sources of Information about HIV/AIDS among Barbers in Ibadan, Nigeria
Objective: The study documented the influence of HIV/AIDS information on the knowledge and attitudes of barbers relating to the prevention of HIV in their professional practices. Methods: Data were collected using standardized questionnaire from all the 372 commercial barbers in a Local Government Area in Ibadan. Results: Ninety three percent of the barbers had at least primary school education and 99.5% learnt barbering through apprenticeship. Those who identified sex and sharing of invasive objects with infected persons as transmission routes were 96.7% and 84.7% respectively. Preventive measures mentioned were disinfection (86.0%) and avoiding accidental cuts (87.4%). There were misconceptions like availability of cure (18%) and transmission of HIV through handshake (14.5%). Majority (64.8%) thought only visibly stained instruments were infectious and 83.3% did not know that barbers were at risk of direct infection from the clients. Those with higher education had more HIV knowledge than the less educated ones (p<0.05). Ninety-five percent agreed that equipment decontamination was the primary responsibility of barbers. Major source of information identified was mass media (95.7%). Conclusion: The occupational-specific knowledge and attitudes of the barbers about HIV/AIDS were inadequate. Mass media messages should be reinforced with pertinent information through personto-person contact.