HIV/AIDS Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices among College Students in Pampanga, Philippines

Author(s): Batholomew Chibuike James, Razel Kawano, Wit Wichaidit

Introduction: Knowledge, attitude, and practices (KAPs) are pillars in the fight against HIV/AIDS worldwide. It stands to be the very best helpful tool to evaluate and assess individual or community before implementing intervention program approaches. The study evaluates the knowledge, attitudes and practices on HIV, AIDS prevention and transmission among college students in Pampanga, Philippines.

Materials and Methods: This is a cross-sectional, descriptive research method utilising a self-administered questionnaire among 565 college students aged 18-24 in three selected higher educational institutions in Pampanga, Philippines; The statistical analyses included univariate analyses, frequency, percentages, mean and Standard Deviation (SD) or median, interquartile range (IQR) and SPSS. Chi-square test of independence for the association.

Results: Among 565 participants, 239 persons (42%) showed low knowledge of transmission and prevention of HIV/AIDS, 203 (36%) has a moderate level of knowledge, and 121 (21%) has a high level. Common misconceptions about HIV transmission included that washing genitals could prevent transmission and that transmission was possible through mosquito bites, respiratory fluids, sweat, or urine. Television was the most frequent source of HIV/AIDS-related knowledge among respondents. Those who answered questions related to the sexual practices said that their last 3 encounters were the same person and their sterilising "piercing objects" before use. Still, those who answered that they engaged in such practices accounted for 22% and 29% of all participants, respectively.

Conclusion: Misconceptions regarding HIV was common in the study population, and approximately one-fourth of respondents engaged in high-risk practices. Social desirability could have biased the self-reported responses; thus, caveats were considered to interpret the study findings. Intervention programme in colleges around the Philippines to improve their knowledge regarding HIV, AIDS is recommended

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