Assessment of Safe Sexual Practice and Knowledge of HIV/AIDS among Female Sex Workers in Port Harcourt
International STD Research & Reviews,
Introduction: Monitoring of the practices and behaviour of populations more vulnerable to HIV infection is essential for effective interventions and it is of importance to curtail the spread of HIV and to help generate significant changes in the transmission pattern of HIV/AIDS in the general population. The aim of this study was to assess safe sexual practice and knowledge of HIV/AIDS among female sex workers in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Nigeria.
Method: Two hundred female sex workers participated in this cross-sectional study. Data was collected using an adapted IBBSS-2014 semi-structured questionnaire and interview method. Knowledge of HIV among Female Sex Workers (FSWs) was also assessed with questions on Test for HIV, modes of transmission, prevention, behavioural attributes of HIV and safe sexual practice assessed for with the options of answers of these dimension: YES and NO. Data for this study was collected by trained peer educators who are familiar with the environment via interview method with FSWs. Data Obtained were analyzed and presented using descriptive statistics of frequency tables, simple percentage and bar charts using Microsoft Excel 2016.
Results: Result obtained showed that the mean age of FSWs was 25.7±3.7years, majority of the respondent (59.5%) had secondary education, majority (81.0%) of FSWs are Single and about 2.5% are married. Also more than a quarter (44.5%) started sex work at 20-24 years with a mean age of 22.0±3.0 years. Also, majority of them do not have other source of income (70%). On Assessment of risky behaviours such as multiple sex partners, no condom use during sexual intercourse, there was a high prevalence of use of condoms with most especially paying partners (70.5%) and casual partners (52.5%). On assessment of female Sex Workers’ knowledge on HIV, majority of FSWs have good knowledge of HIV transmission, prevention and the need to get tested.
Conclusion: Though FSWs practice a minimal safe sexual practice by the use of condoms with higher percentage of different identified partners as well as having acceptable knowledge of HIV, the few FSWs who lack this knowledge and do not practice safe sex needs to be re-sensitized of the need for their benefit and the benefit of the general population. Conclusively, safe sexual practices and acceptable knowledge about prevention, transmission and the need to be tested for HIV were observed.
- Female Sex Workers
- knowledge of HIV
- Port Harcourt
- safe sexual practice
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