1.1 Background of the Study
HIV/AIDS has in the past decades had devastating effects on the youthful population, especially, youths by causing deaths and stigmatization. Prevention of HIV/ AIDS is critical for creating a healthy and productive population. According to WHO[i], 95% of the world population should have accurate knowledge about HIV and AIDS to prevent new infections. However, in low and middle-income countries only 24% and 36% of young women and men respectively have accurate knowledge about the disease. Lack of adequate knowledge prevents individuals from taking preventive measures such as using condoms to avoid acquiring HIV and AIDS.
A positive attitude towards HIV/ AIDS and the people living with it is required to enhance prevention. A positive attitude eliminates stigma and discrimination, thereby allowing individuals to go for HIV tests and seek medication. In the contrary, the negative attitude associated with the disease when it emerged in early 1980s still exists today. This is reflected in the stigma, fear, and discrimination that HIV/ AIDS patients face today. Individuals believe that HIV/ AIDS is a life threatening condition associated with death.
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DETERMINANTS OF HIV/AIDS SPREAD AMONG YOUTHS (18-26) IN IKOT EKPENE LGA OF AKWA IBOM STATE