Level of Awareness about HIV/AIDs among truck drivers and their attitude towards persons with AIDs

Muhammad Anwar Chaudhry, Muhammad Naeem, Rizwan Iqbal, Iffat Shabbir

Abstract


Background: HIV thrives on mobile population. Truck drivers particularly the long distance truck drivers are more vulnerable to HIV infection, because they travel a lot, remain cut off from the mainstream society, often engage in activities such as having unsafe sex with commercial sex workers and fellow crew members, in order to reduce their loneliness.

Material & Methods: In this study 75 truck drivers at Badami Bagh Truck Stand, Lahore, Pakistan, were interviewed on non-random basis, using convenient sampling technique. A questionnaire was designed as a tool for data collection to assess the level of knowledge about HIV/AIDS and the attitude towards persons with AIDS.

Results: It was found that 50% of the truck drivers did not know whether needles had any role in the spread of HIV/AIDS. 30-40% thought that needles had nothing to do with the transmission of AIDS. Forty to fifty percent of respondents had the misconception that AIDS can be contracted by casual contact and by being in the same room with a person with AIDS. Two third of the truck drivers did think that monogamy and condom use is an effective method for AIDS prevention. An association between low knowledge of AIDS and high negative attitude towards persons with AIDS was found to exist, which was statistically significant.

Conclusion: Long distance truck drivers in Pakistan have serious gaps in their knowledge about HIV/AIDS, especially its modes of transmission, signs /symptoms and prevention. They also have a negative attitude towards persons with AIDS. Low knowledge of HIV/AIDS leads to negative attitude towards persons with AIDS.


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Copyright (c) 2020 Muhammad Anwar Chaudhry, Muhammad Naeem, Rizwan Iqbal, Iffat Shabbir

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Gomal Medical College, Daraban Road, Dera Ismail Khan, Pakistan

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