Awareness of HIV/AIDS among Market Women in an Urban Market

  • P C Campbell
  • A O Bamgbala
  • A O Oduwole


Introduction: In Nigeria the HIV sero- prevalence is steadily increasing. It is presently put at 5.8% of the general population. This implies that even those not necessarily classed as high risk have a 6% chance of getting infected. Market women fall into this category and are also good target groups to enhance information dissemination to their children as well as neighbors. This preliminary study is sought to determine the level of awareness among the grass root market women about HIV / AIDS, and to serve as a baseline for women's supportive health intervention programmes. Methodology: Advocacy and sensitization and mobilization of various sections of Oyingbo Market, Ebute Metta, in Mainland local government area (LGA) were conducted. Of the 200 market women attendees, trained interviewers administered 162 questionnaires with a response rate of 81%. Results: Eighty-three (51%) had heard of HIV/AIDS. The main source of information (51.5%) was electronic and (32.4%) print media. Only 31% had seen an HIV/AIDS person. Less than 65% knew that HIV/AIDS was transmitted by sex, 53.2% by blood transfusion, and 62% by mother to child transmission. Just 45% knew HIV had no cure, although only 11.5% were afraid of getting infected with HIV. Very few (24%) could correctly identify preventive measures against HIV. Only 25% would agree to shake hands with an HIV positive patient. None of the women believed an HIV positive woman should breast feed her children and only 9.2% believed they should even be allowed to have children. Conclusion: No doubt, information about HIV/AIDS is getting to the general population. However more people need to know the various modes of transmission as well as accurate information on prevention. They also need to realize the fact that HIV positive persons should not be stigmatized

Keywords: Market women, knowledge, HIV/AIDS

NQJHM Vol. 14 (2) 2004: pp. 147-150

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eISSN: 0189-2657