Knowledge about HPV and attitudes towards HPV vaccination among nursing students in Mulago, Mengo and Nsambya nursing schools.
Nsibambi, D. Y
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INTRODUCTION: HPV is the most prevalent STI in the world with over 100 subtypes identified to date. Of these, over 40 infect the genital tract with certain subtypes designated high risk associated with cervical and other ano-genital cancers whereas the low risk subtypes are associated with gental warts. Two vaccines, gardasil and cervarix against HPV 16 and 18, the precursors of cancer of the cervix have been developed to date and shown to be effective. Nurses are important sources of health related information and parents value their recommendations about health related matters including vaccines. It is therefore important that they have the right information and attitudes towards vaccination because the success of HPV vaccination programs will depend on their willingness and ability to recommend HPV vaccines to the patients and parents or guardians of the girls they get in contact with. Against this background, this study was carried out to assess knowledge about HPV and attitudes that nursing students have towards HPV vaccination. GENERAL OBJECTIVE: To determine the knowledge about HPV and the attitudes towards HPV vaccination among nursing students in Mulago, Mengo and Nsambya nursing schools. SPECIFIC OBJECTIVES: 1. To assess the knowledge about HPV among nursing students at Mulago, Mengo and Nsambya nursing schools 2. To describe the attitudes of nursing students at Mulago, Mengo and Nsambya nursing schools towards HPV vaccination of young girls aged 10-12 years. METHODS: This was a cross sectional study conducted in mulago, mengo anf nsambya nursing schools. The target population was final year nursing students. The sample size was 384 students. Random sampling was used proportionate to the number of students in each institution. Data was collected from the students that gave an informed consent. The data collection tool was a self administered questionnaire. Focus group discussions and key informant interviews were also done. After the purpose of the study had been explained to the students, they were requested to voluntarily participate in the study. Information collected included the socio-demographics of the students, their knowledge about HPV and attitudes towards HPV vaccination. Data was entered and cleaned using EPI DATA version 2.1b and analysed using SPSS version 13.0. RESULTS: A Total of 432 study participants were included in the analysis and of these 368 (85.2%) were found to have adequate knowledge about HPV while 64(14.8%) had limited knowledge of theis disease. Majority 398 (92.1%) of the study participants had a positive attitude towards HPV vaccination. Those who had a negative attitude had some concerns that need to be addressed. CONCLUSION: Most of the study participants had adequate knowledge of HPV and were positive towards HPV vaccination although there was some misunderstandings of some details concerning HPV and myths associated with HPV vaccination. RECOMMENDATIONS: The MOH and other stakeholders involved in planning and implementing of HPV vaccination programs should target these students since majority have good knowledge and a positive attitude.