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J Infect Dev Ctries. 2012 Nov 26;6(11):809-16. doi: 10.3855/jidc.2086.

Knowledge and attitudes regarding HIV/AIDS and antiretroviral therapy among patients at a Nigerian treatment clinic.

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  • 1Department of Community Health, College of Health Sciences, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, Nigeria.



We assessed the knowledge of and attitudes toward HIV/AIDS and antiretroviral therapy (ART) in people living with HIV/AIDS (PLWHA).


A descriptive, cross-sectional study design was employed. A structured interviewer-administered questionnaire was administered to consecutive, consenting PLWHA who had been receiving treatment for a minimum of three months. The level of ART adherence was calculated manually for each respondent.


In total 318 PLWHA completed the questionnaire. The mean and median time on ART was 17.8 months and 19 months respectively. The mean age of the respondents was 39.1±9.6 years. The majority of these respondents (76.9%) had completed secondary education. Over 80% of the respondents reported knowing that HIV can be transmitted through blood transfusions and unprotected sexual intercourse. Seventy-six per cent of the respondents reported knowing that ART suppresses HIV activity. However, 33% of the respondents denied being HIV positive, while 22.6% reported that they felt that taking ART was shameful. Over 32% of the respondents reported that good adherence to ART would raise suspicions about their HIV status, and 66.7% had not yet disclosed their HIV status to anyone. Most (77.7%) respondents had good knowledge of HIV/AIDS while 75.2% had good knowledge of ART. Also 78.9% had positive attitude to HIV/AIDS while 73.9%) had positive attitude to ART. Respondents with good knowledge about HIV/AIDS and a positive attitude about the disease tended to be more adherent to ART (p < 0.01).


The majority of respondents had good knowledge of and a positive attitude toward HIV/AIDS and ART adherence.

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