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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14(3), 284; doi:10.3390/ijerph14030284

Attitude of Health Care Workers (HCWs) toward Patients Affected by HIV/AIDS and Drug Users: A Cross-Sectional Study

1
Occupational Medicine, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Catania, Via Santa Sofia, 95123 Catania, Italy
2
University Hospital of Catania Policlinico-Vittorio Emanuele, Via Santa Sofia, 95123 Catania, Italy
3
Faculty of Human and Social Sciences, Kore University of Enna, Viale delle Olimpiadi, 94100 Enna, Italy
4
Unit of Infectious Diseases, Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine, University of Messina, Via Consolare Valeria, 98124 Messina, Italy
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Ronald L. Braithwaite, Mario De La Rosa and Selina A. Smith
Received: 31 December 2016 / Revised: 14 February 2017 / Accepted: 7 March 2017 / Published: 9 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Cultural Determinants of HIV, Substance Abuse and Addiction)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [287 KB, uploaded 9 March 2017]

Abstract

Caring for HIV/AIDS patients and/or drug users requires health care workers (HCWs) to have good knowledge of the issues. Cultural differences in HCWs, combined with professional ethics and personal beliefs, could also result in conflicting attitudes, leading to difficulties related to looking after people affected by HIV/AIDS or drug users. A cross-sectional study was carried out to assess the attitude towards HIV/AIDS patients and/or drug users in a sample of workers operating in a large university hospital in southern Italy. A total of 736 workers were surveyed from May to November 2016. During the periodic occupational health surveillance, a questionnaire was administered about attitudes of discrimination, acceptance and fear towards these patients. Respondents showed average levels of acceptance to HIV/AIDS and drug user patients. As years of experience and professional training increased, scores for discrimination, acceptance of HIV/AIDS, acceptance of drug users and fear decreased. Factors positively influencing levels of attitudes were being female and younger. Supplementary education is needed to strengthen the awareness of HCWs. View Full-Text
Keywords: healthcare workers; HIV; AIDS; drug users healthcare workers; HIV; AIDS; drug users
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Ledda, C.; Cicciù, F.; Puglisi, B.; Ramaci, T.; Nunnari, G.; Rapisarda, V. Attitude of Health Care Workers (HCWs) toward Patients Affected by HIV/AIDS and Drug Users: A Cross-Sectional Study. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017, 14, 284.

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