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Year : 2010  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 8  |  Page : 381-388

Knowledge, attitude and practices of adults of the reproductive years on reproductive health matters, with emphasis on HIV infected people in a Caribbean society

Department of Community Health and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medical Sciences, The University of the West Indies, Mona, Kingston, Jamaica

Correspondence Address:
Paul A Bourne
Public Health Specialist, Department of Community Health and Psychiatry, Faculty of Medical Sciences, The University of the West Indies, Mona
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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Background : South and Southeast Asia represent the largest number of new HIV infections, while Sub-Saharan Africa represents the highest rate of new infections, followed by Latin America and the Caribbean. Yet no study that has emerged in the Caribbean has comprehensively examined young people's sexual and reproductive health attitudes, knowledge and practices, comparing the result with those who are HIV infected. Aim : The present study examines core issues of sexual and reproductive health among youths, particularly with respect to HIV. Material and Methods : The sample was 1,800 respondents ages 15-49 years. Multivariate logistic regressions were fitted using one outcome measure: self-reported confirmed positive HIV test results. Results : Almost 34% of the sample had been tested for HIV, and 16.9% had done this in the past 12 months. Only 0.2% of the sample knew that they were HIV positive and 4% had positive HIV test results when they did the test. Of those with a positive HIV test result, 58.1% were females. Approximately 16% of those with HIV have had an STI infection in the past, and 61% were actively practicing religion. The mean age of first sexual relations for the sample was 15.4 years (SD = 3.2 years), and 15.6 years for those infected with HIV. Four variables emerged as statistically significant factors of Jamaicans' willingness to do an HIV test in the future. Conclusion : The findings of this research are far-reaching and can be used to guide public health policy formulation.

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