Publication Date

2012

Keywords

HIV/AIDS, Public Health

Abstract

HIV/AIDS has remained one of Nigeria's biggest health and social issues for decades. People aged between 10 and 24 are the most affected. Research into why this population subset is affected is very pertinent. We therefore conducted a systematic review of the Knowledge and Attitudes of young people in Nigeria about HIV/AIDS to understand where the gaps between knowledge and attitudes can be bridged. ^ Methods: We conducted searches in Medline, PubMed, African Index Medicus, Cumulative Index of Nursing and Allied Health. WHO and UNAIDS documents were also searched. Other journals were hand searched. Searches were for studies between 1986 (when HIV/AIDS was first reported in Nigeria) till date. In addition, data abstraction and quality assessment were done. ^ Results: 279 titles and abstracts were found and 33 articles in full text were appraised critically and 17 articles were selected based on our criteria. This revealed a dearth of well conducted studies in the literature despite the enormity of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Constructs for Knowledge and attitudes were itemized on two tables for each article based on the Health Belief Model. Even though many of the studies showed high level of knowledge about HIV/AIDS, it did not impact attitudes about the disease. Also fear and anxiety prevented participants from acquiring knowledge. These recurring themes arguably were not limited to any region or area, background or group. Conclusion: There is a need for future research to be culturally sensitive with a focus on attitudes and correction of misconceptions about HIV/AIDS among our youth.

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