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      Knowledge, attitude and perception on utilization of Voluntary Counselling and Testing services: Experiences from secondary school students in Northern Tanzania

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      Counselling, Human immunodeficiency virus
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            Abstract

            Introduction: Voluntary counselling is a confidential dialogue between person and care provider aimed at enabling the person to cope with stress and make personal decision related to HIV/AIDS. The provision of HIV/AIDS-related counselling services in Tanzania started in 1988, three years after the first three AIDS cases were identified in Tanzania. Despite youth including secondary school students being an important reproductive group in government’s economic development in all sectors but they do not have enough knowledge on utilization of Voluntary counselling and Testing (VCT) services and its importance towards prevention and treatment of HIV/AIDS. Additionally, school students for instance seminary students, do not get easy access of knowledge on various diseases’ preventive measures including utilization of VCT for HIV/AIDS. We aimed to describe the knowledge, attitude, perception, and practices of secondary school students towards VCT services for HIV/AIDS.

            Methodology: We conducted a descriptive cross-sectional study that used a modified Knowledge, Attitude, perception and Practice (KAP) questionnaire about VCT for HIV/AIDS between May and June 2015. The study population included students from Chanjale junior seminary school in which a simple random sampling was used for select the study participants. Data entry and analysis were done by using Microsoft excel.

            Results: The study involved 231 (100%) students in which among those; 63.2% (146/231) were males. The study found that, most of students have little knowledge and awareness on VCT services as 68.0% haven’t heard of VCT services; students had both positive and negative attitudes toward VCT services; but again, fear for lack of confidentiality after HIV testing was seen as the principal setback towards utilization of VCT services for HIV/AIDS among students.

            Conclusion: HIV is still on the increase, despite several measures undertaken through different approaches including VCT program. Since the study has found that there is insufficient knowledge and practices of VCT services for HIV/AIDS among youths for instance secondary school students, there is the need to focus on various interventional methods that will reform the youth’s knowledge, attitude, perception and practices towards VCT for HIV/AIDS.

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            Author and article information

            Journal
            ScienceOpen Preprints
            ScienceOpen
            14 October 2022
            Affiliations
            [1 ] Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
            [2 ] Department of Surgery, Muhimbili University of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
            Author notes
            Article
            10.14293/S2199-1006.1.SOR-.PP99AQQ.v1
            a1290cb7-a36a-41ec-a709-19fce91673d9

            This work has been published open access under Creative Commons Attribution License CC BY 4.0 , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Conditions, terms of use and publishing policy can be found at www.scienceopen.com .


            The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.
            Medicine,Statistics
            Counselling, Human immunodeficiency virus

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