The effect of an educational game on patients’ uptake of knowledge of HIV and sexually transmitted infections at the Infectious Diseases Institute, Kampala
Namukasa, Jane Francis Wanyama
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Background: Globally, as the number of HIV/AIDS cases continues to rise, the search for effective health education strategies must intensify. A new educational board game “Make a Positive Start Today!” has been developed in efforts to increase HIV peoples’ participation and attention to HIV/STIs prevention information. This study sought to assess the effect of the educational game on uptake of knowledge of HIV and Sexually Transmitted infections prevention with positives messages in a sample of HIV-positive patients attending the Infectious Diseases Clinic, Kampala. Methods: We performed a randomized controlled trial where patients were randomized by simple random sampling with STATA version 10.0 to either the board game or Standard of Care arms. Participants’ knowledge was assessed before and after the health education sessions. Results: A total of 180 participants were randomly assigned 90 participants to each of the study arms. There was significant (p<0.001) increase in uptake of knowledge of HIV/STIs prevention in both study arms. However, compared with controls, participants randomized to the board game arm had higher uptake of knowledge (4.69points, 95% CI: 3.94-5.43) than the controls (1.53points, 95% CI: 0.92-2.13) and the difference was statistically significant (3.16, 95% CI: 3.06-3.26). Additionally, both participants and facilitators gave more favorable rating for the board game method with a median rating of 2(range 1-2) as compared to 3(range 2-4) for the Standard of Care. Conclusion & Recommendations: “Make a Positive Start Today!” educational game significantly results in higher uptake of knowledge of HIV/STIs prevention than the Standard of Care in the short term. There is need however to evaluate the impact of educational game in further enhancing the uptake of messages of public health importance in the long term.