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  Table of Contents  
ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2020  |  Volume : 41  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 88-92
 

Is there any perceptiveness about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome? An analysis among the adolescent tribal students in Tamil Nadu


Division of Health Services Research, Tribal Health research Unit, National Institute of Epidemiology, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India

Date of Submission12-Jul-2017
Date of Acceptance01-Jul-2018
Date of Web Publication11-Apr-2018

Correspondence Address:
Dr. J John Britto
Tribal Health Research Unit, National Institute of Epidemiology, R.127, 3rd Avenue, Tamil Nadu Housing Board, Ayapakkam, Chennai - 600 077, Tamil Nadu
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2589-0557.229942

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   Abstract 

Background: Cognizance about human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) among the community is still lacking. Seldom studies done in tribal area and to indentify the awareness about HIV/AIDS among the adolescent tribal students in Jawadhu hills of Tamil Nadu, with the objectives includes on social, demographical, and knowledge about HIV/AIDS were taken. For primary data, survey method and secondary data from various literatures gathered. Materials and Methods: Schedule tribe adolescent students, between the age groups of 13–21 years, from 8th to 12th standard, exclusively from Vellore and Tiruvannamalai educational districts, were taken, by applying STRATA method. Results: A total of 938 students from various tribal schools participated. Amongst them, 507 (54%) were males and 431 (46%) were females. Half of the respondents (50%) agreed that blood transfusion, intravenous drug use, and sharing infected needles are the major modes of transmission. Nearly 35% agreed that HIV/AIDS is transmitted by hugging, tattooing, dirty hands, breastfeeding, kissing on cheeks, shaving at the barber shop, shaking hands with AIDS patients, homosexuality and are food and waterborne. Conclusions: Formal HIV/AIDS education should be mandatory in their curriculum, where teachers get an opportunity to deliver the scientific information about HIV/AIDS. To acquire better knowledge about HIV/AIDS, sex education should be included in the mainstream of curriculum with the assistance of educational consultants, professional social workers, and also local non-governmental organizations to conduct further mindfulness camps about the HIV/AIDS.


Keywords: Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, adolescent tribal students, human immunodeficiency virus, Jawadhu hills, mode of transmission


How to cite this article:
Britto J J, Yuvaraj J. Is there any perceptiveness about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome? An analysis among the adolescent tribal students in Tamil Nadu. Indian J Sex Transm Dis 2020;41:88-92

How to cite this URL:
Britto J J, Yuvaraj J. Is there any perceptiveness about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome? An analysis among the adolescent tribal students in Tamil Nadu. Indian J Sex Transm Dis [serial online] 2020 [cited 2020 Sep 19];41:88-92. Available from: http://www.ijstd.org/text.asp?2020/41/1/88/229942



   Introduction Top


Among serious health problems of 21st century is acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS),[1] with the fourth epidemic, challenging the Asian region.[2] Approximately 2.5 million infected in India living with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)/AIDS,[3],[4] ranked third, behind South Africa and Nigeria.[5] This epidemic is more generalized with the burden, being faced by urban, and low education levels, as HIV prevention activities, initially focused on high-risk groups, including intravenous drug users, female sex workers, and truck drivers.[3],[6],[7]

HIV/AIDS has had its greatest shocking impacts in India next to Africa and occurrence of the illness remains in most nations. An obvious precondition for behavior modification is that people should considerate the disease and how infection can be prevented. Several studies carried out in the past to apprehend the susceptibility of Indian society to HIV and other sexually transmitted infections.

In India, scheduled castes and tribes are undergoing extensive social downgrading and hierarchy with respect to all aspects, while other backward classes experienced social relegation to a lesser degree.[8] Peer education, in spite of its long history, being applied in health education and especially for HIV prevention started in the 1980s, gaining in popularity in the recent years in health education, encouraging interactions between peers.[9] Interventions in the form of peer education about HIV/AIDS prevention are normally based on behavioral theories; design of the intervention is based partly on the theory of diffusion of innovations.[10] Innovation can be new information, an attitude, belief, practice, or any other objects that are perceived as new, by the individual or the community and can be diffused to a specific group. Communication of innovation through certain channels among members of a social system (here, the school), the “key role” is played by the opinion leaders (teachers) as “change agents.”

Peer educators play this role by influencing the activities that are organized for their peers, also other relevance in the peer's environment (family, friends, etc.) through an informal diffusion.[11] Forty percent of all new infections worldwide were between 15 and 24 years.[12] The United States predicted that more than a million adults and adolescents live with HIV infection at the end of 2006.[13] Information on knowledge and risk behaviors related to HIV is important for better understanding and identifying the high-risk populations. Focus of many preventative programs is to increase knowledge about sexual transmission and to overcome misconceptions that may be acting as a deterrent in behavioral change toward safer practices.


   Materials and Methods Top


Descriptive, cross-sectional study conducted among the students of 8th to 12th standard, in Vellore and Tiruvannamalai districts. Total study population were n = 3752 and using simple, systematic, stratified random selection method, 25% of the respondents selected. Male ((507) 54%) and female students ((431) 46%), who were attended school on that day were taken, by applying stratify simple systematic random selection method. Survey questionnaire consists of knowledge about HIV/AIDS, mode of transmission, and prevention of HIV/AIDS. Cronbach's alpha (α) reliability test measures the bunch of questionnaire about the mode of transmission was 0.724 established. According to Ogbazi and Okpala, reliability coefficient was higher than criteria of 0.60, was acceptable for good instruments.[14] Study purpose explained and written consent was obtained. Ethical procedure carried out, and their identification was highly maintained. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the demographical details, and Pearson's Chi-square test was used to analyze the association.


   Results Top


A total of 938 students participated and forest school students constitute more than and nearly three fourth of the students(72.1%) and one-third of the students (72.1%) were between the age group of 13–15 years. Male and female students are almost equal, and nearly 50% of the respondents' parents were illiterate [Table 1].
Table 1: Demographic characteristics of the sample (n=938)

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Oladepo found that 72.6% of their participants thought that kissing, hugging, and shaking hands are the means by which HIV/AIDS spread.[15] [Table 2] indicated, more than 50% agreed that blood transfusion, intravenous drug use, and sharing infected needles are the major modes of transmission. Less than 35% agreed that HIV/AIDS being transmitted by hugging, tattooing, dirty hands, breastfeeding, kissing on cheeks, shaving at the barber shop, shaking hands with AIDS patients, homosexuality, and food and waterborne.
Table 2: Knowledge variables about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome sample (n=938)

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A study by Mahat found that moderate level of knowledge among the students' regarding meaning, modes of transmission, and preventative and control measures to HIV/AIDS,[16] whereas this study, [Table 3] indicated that >64.3% are having average knowledge and the rest of 17.4% are having poor knowledge about the mode of transmission.
Table 3: Overall levels of knowledge about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome

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Pearson's Chi-square analysis shows the association between gender and various dimensions of knowledge about mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS's variables. In [Table 4], the statement 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 13, and 15 were (P<0.05) statistically significant association between gender and knowledge about mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS variables whereas, the statement 1, 4, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, and 16 (P>0.05) were statistically shows that there is a nonsignificant association between gender and the knowledge about the mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS variables.
Table 4: Association between knowledge about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome's variables and gender

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Pearson's Chi-square test for association between gender and overall knowledge [Table 5] about mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS was tested and inferred that there was a statistically significant association between gender and overall knowledge about HIV/AIDS. Chi-square (2) = 25.146, P<0.001. Phi (φ) and Cramer's V are both measures of the strength of association of a nominal by nominal relationship and found weak association (φ = 0.164, P = 0.000).
Table 5: Association between overall general knowledge about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome variables and gender

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One-way analysis of variance results revealed a significant difference between the age groups of the respondents (F = 11.026, P ≤ 0.05). The post hoc test also indicated that age groups between the 13–15 and 19–21 years have a significant difference [Table 6].
Table 6: Analysis of variance-difference between the age groups of the respondents and overall various dimensions of knowledge about the mode of transmission of human immunodeficiency virus/acquired immune deficiency syndrome

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   Discussion Top


Students are conscious of HIV/AIDS through various sources; yet, outcome of the study established that overall the level of knowledge was average, and female students are far better than the male students. In depth, accurate knowledge on various aspects of the mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS is lacking. A study done in Southwest Nigeria found that adolescents have a high acquaintance on HIV/AIDS; however, most adolescents have misconceptions about the cure of AIDS.[17] Significant gender difference in broad spectrum about HIV/AIDS's knowledge, females being more knowledgeable than males was noticed. Suggestions were made to educate with intervention programs to increase the level of knowledge and awareness of HIV/AIDS.

Surprising to note that [Table 2] more than half of the students agreed that the HIV/AIDS transmitting through coughing, sneezing, blood transfusion, sharing injection needles, and intravenous drug use. However, one-third of the students agreed that transmission through, hugging, food or waterborne, dirty hands, breastfeeding, kissing on the cheeks, shaving at the barber shop, shaking hands of AIDS patients, and homosexuality. Knowledge levels about HIV/AIDS were indicated [Table 3] that more than 64.3% are having average knowledge, which requires awareness program.

In [Table 4], seven variables, such as HIV/AIDS transmitted through shaking hands with AIDS patients, sneezing, dirty hands, intravenous drug usage, coughing, foodborne or waterborne were less than the hypothetical values of 0.05, indicated that the there is a significant difference between genders and knowledge regarding the means of transmission of HIV/AIDS.

To find out the overall significance of the knowledge about the mode of transmission, both boys and girls were compared, statistical significant differences were found in most sources of information of HIV/AIDS were shown in [Table 5]. It is evident that more than 50% of the students (64.3%) are having an average knowledge and female students are slightly higher than the male.


   Conclusions Top


In spite of various modalities of awareness programs, introduce through media, accurate knowledge, and awareness about transmission of HIV/AIDS is not established among the adolescent tribal students. Mindfulness program on HIV/AIDS should be need based and focused, and this will facilitate in helping the adolescents to eliminate the incorrect impression and stigmas. Adolescent period is a crucial period of transition, misinterpretation and improper recognition any issues, which in turn, brings in adversity and tragedy to their life. Awareness acquisition with correct information will help the adolescents to shape their life much more gainfully. The outcome requires a formal HIV/AIDS subject, incorporated into curriculum, where teachers get an opportunity to deliver the scientific information about HIV/AIDS.

Adequate knowledge eliminates experimental tendencies and removes the gap between right and wrong among the adolescents. Suggestion to inclusion of local social work students, public health disciplines, local communities, and the guidance of their class teachers, misconception about the mode of transmission of HIV/AIDS can be rectified.

Acknowledgment

The authors would like to thank the CEO of Vellore and Thiruvannamalai districts for their permission and also thanks to Dr. Vignesh Kumar, Ms. Kalpana, Ms. Suganya, and Ms. Jolly for assisting in data collection, Dr. Nirmala Agnes Britto and Dr. Preethika I. Britto for review and editing. Sincere thanks to heads of schools for their extensive support. Finally, we extend our thanks to all the adolescent students for their cooperation.

Financial support and sponsorship

Nil.

Conflicts of interest

There are no conflicts of interest.



 
   References Top

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2.
Rao PJ, Mboi N, Phoolcharoen W, Sarkar S, Carael M. AIDS in Asia amid competing priorities: A review of national responses to HIV. AIDS 2010;24 Suppl 3:S41-8.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
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UNAIDS. AIDS Epidemic Update 2007, Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS. UNAIDS & WHO; 2007.  Back to cited text no. 4
    
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Perkins JM, Khan KT, Subramanian SV. Patterns and distribution of HIV among adult men and women in India. PLoS One 2009;4:e5648.  Back to cited text no. 7
    
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Subramanian SV, Nandy S, Irving M, Gordon D, Lambert H, Davey Smith G, et al. The mortality divide in India: The differential contributions of gender, caste, and standard of living across the life course. Am J Public Health 2006;96:818-25.  Back to cited text no. 8
    
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Merakou K, Kourea-Kremastinou J. Peer education in HIV prevention: An evaluation in schools. Eur J Public Health 2006;16:128-32.  Back to cited text no. 9
    
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Rogers EM. Diffusion of Innovations. 3rd ed. New York: The Free Press, a Division of Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc.; 1962. p. 163-201.  Back to cited text no. 10
    
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Oldenburg B, Glanz K. Diffusion of innovations. In: Karen Glanz, Barbara K. Rimer, Viswanath K (eds). Health Behavior and Health Education– Theory, Research, and Practice. Jossey- Bass. 4th ed. San Francisco, CA: 2008. p. 313-30.  Back to cited text no. 11
    
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Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. HIV/AIDS Surveillance Report 2006. Vol. 18. Atlanta: U.S.; 2008.  Back to cited text no. 13
    
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Ogbazi J, Okpala J. Writing Research Report: Guide for Researchers in Education, the Social Sciences and Humanities. Enugu: Press Time Ltd.; 1994.  Back to cited text no. 14
    
15.
Oladepo O, Brieger WR. AIDS knowledge, attitude and behaviour patterns among university students in Ibadan, Nigeria. Afr J Med Med Sci 1994;23:119-25.  Back to cited text no. 15
    
16.
Mahat G, Scoloveno MA. HIV/AIDS knowledge, attitudes and beliefs among nepalese adolescents. J Adv Nurs 2006;53:583-90.  Back to cited text no. 16
    
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Odu BK, Bimbola Kemi Odu and Florence Foluso Akanle Knowledge of HIV/AIDS and sexual behaviour among the youths in South West Nigeria. Int J Trop Med 2008;3:79-84.  Back to cited text no. 17
    



 
 
    Tables

  [Table 1], [Table 2], [Table 3], [Table 4], [Table 5], [Table 6]



 

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