Knowledge, Attitude, Beliefs and Perception of HIV-positive women towards PMTCT program services in NAUTH Nnewi, Nigeria
Background: Though transmission of Human Immune-deficiency Virus (HIV) in Nigeria occurs primarily through heterosexual contact, vertical transmission of the infection remains a major concern because of the attendant health consequences for the child. The success of a Prevention-of-Mother-to-Child-Transmission (PMTCT) programme in reducing sero-conversion among exposed-infants is determined by many factors, including anti-retroviral drugs (ARVs), infant feeding practices, use of well-baby care, counselling and support to mother-newborn pair. Little is known about the effects of PMTCT interventions in Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital (NAUTH) Nnewi, and this study was aimed at assessing the knowledge of PMTCT program / services and HIV risk-perception among HIV-positive women in this center.
Methodology: The study design was descriptive cross-sectional. A total of 288 consenting HIV-positive mothers of recruited children was selected using the systematic sampling technique. Data were collected using a pre-tested structured interviewer-administered questionnaire and analysed by means of the SPSS software.
Results: The mean age of the respondents was 30.5+4.86years. Knowledge about HIV transmission was good (97 to 99%), while risk perception about HIV was 100%. Mothers who reported their treatment in the clinic as “very good” were more likely to declare PMTCT as “good” than mothers who were less well treated in the programme (p <0.01).
Conclusion: The programme has resulted in high scores in mothers’ knowledge and perception of various aspects and dimensions of HIV infection and PMTCT.
Recommendations: Health education/counselling component of the PMTCT programme should be reinforced in order to strengthen it.
Keywords: Effects, human immune-deficiency virus, mothers, vertical transmission.