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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 17  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 70-75

Knowledge, attitude, and practice toward human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome: A questionnaire study among students, teachers, and parents in Mangalore, India

Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, A.B Shetty Memorial Institute of Dental Sciences, Nitte University, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Neil J De Souza
Department of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry, Government Dental College, Bambolim, Goa
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jiaphd.jiaphd_139_17

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Background: The human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) epidemic probably represents the greatest public health problem in India and the world today. Education and awareness of the society forms an integral part of the global effort to prevent and control the spread of AIDS. Aim: The aim of this study was to evaluate the levels of knowledge, attitude, and practice toward HIV/AIDS among various schoolgoing children, teachers, and parents in urban and rural areas of Mangalore, Karnataka. Materials and Methods: The cross-sectional study was conducted among a sample of 1535 respondents comprising students, teachers, and parents associated with three rural and two urban schools, by means of a structured questionnaire encompassing knowledge, opinion/attitudes, and practices related to HIV/AIDS. Descriptive and inferential statistics have been applied. Inferential statistics included independent sample t-tests, one-way ANOVA, and Chi-square test. Results: The results suggest a considerable difference in the levels of awareness among the urban and rural population. Furthermore, teachers display significantly greater knowledge about HIV/AIDS, followed by parents and then students. Based on the knowledge scores, the sample population was divided into three categories as follows: high, medium, and low. Nearly 90% of the teachers have high level of knowledge whereas only 40% of parents and 14% of students display high-level knowledge. The results also suggest that urban and rural respondents have acquired knowledge from different sources regarding HIV/AIDS. While friends are the main source of information for the urban respondents, the rural sample draws their knowledge from newspapers and TV. Conclusion: The study suggests that despite the various government-aided programs for HIV/AIDS awareness among schoolgoing children, there still exists a significant difference in the knowledge and awareness between rural and urban populations. The study notes that a sizeable number of children attending rural government schools still lack adequate knowledge about HIV/AIDS.

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