Factors that affect the attitude of dental students towards people living with HIV/AIDS

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Background: The purpose of this study was to determine the various factors that can affect the attitude of students in a dental college in India towards PLWHA. Materials and Methods: A cross sectional survey was conducted among undergraduate dental students, where they were asked to fill an anonymous questionnaire. Apart from the basic information, the questionnaire consisted of a VAS to evaluate the degree of fear of these students in treating PLWHA; questions to assess the attitude towards patients with HIV based on a five-point Likert response; and also closed-ended questions to grade the students' knowledge about HIV infection. The data were then analyzed Student t test and ANOVA. A p-value of <0.05 was considered statistically significant. Results: An increased proportion of students with positive attitude where seen in the clinical group than the preclinical group [p=.001]. The attitude scores were significantly higher in students with minimal fear in treating patients with HIV/AIDS [p=.000] and those with good knowledge on HIV/AIDS [p=.001]. Conclusion: Hence within the limitations of this questionnaire study it can be assumed that the two independent factors that can affect the attitude of dental students towards PLWHA and influence their willingness to treat patients who are HIV positive are the level of knowledge on various aspects of HIV/AIDS and the degree of fear they have in treating HIV infected individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)249-255
Number of pages7
JournalIndian Journal of Public Health Research and Development
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 01-01-2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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