Health workers' knowledge of safer conception and attitudes toward reproductive rights of HIV-infected couples in Kano, Nigeria

Zubairu Iliyasu, Hadiza S. Galadanci, Ahmad A. Zubairu, Taiwo G. Amole, Nadia A. Sam-Agudu, Muktar H. Aliyu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The restriction of reproductive rights of HIV-positive couples in low-resource settings could be related to the attitudes and skills of health workers. We assessed health workers' knowledge of safer conception and their attitudes toward the reproductive rights of HIV-positive couples in a tertiary hospital in Nigeria. Methods: A cross-section of health workers (n=294) was interviewed using structured questionnaires. Knowledge and attitude scores were analyzed. Logistic regression was employed to generate adjusted odds ratios (AORs) for predictors of attitude. Results: Safer conception methods mentioned by respondents included timed unprotected intercourse with (27.9%) and without antiretroviral pre-exposure prophylaxis (37.4%), in vitro fertilization plus intracytoplasmic sperm injection (26.5%), and sperm washing and intrauterine insemination (24.8%). The majority (94.2%) of health workers acknowledged the reproductive rights of HIV-infected persons, although (64.6%) strongly felt that HIV-infected couples should have fewer children. Health workers reported always/nearly always counseling their patients on HIV transmission risks (64.1%) and safer conception (59.2% and 48.3% for females and males, respectively) (p<0.05). Among health workers, being older (30-39 vs <30 y) (AOR=1.33, 95% CI=1.13-2.47), married (AOR=2.15, 95% CI=1.17-5.58) and having a larger HIV-positive daily caseload (20-49 vs <20) (AOR=1.98, 95% CI=1.07-3.64) predicted positive attitude towards reproductive rights of HIV-affected couples. Conclusions: Health workers had limited knowledge of safer conception methods, but were supportive of the reproductive rights of HIV-positive couples. Health workers in Nigeria require training to effectively counsel couples on their reproductive rights, risks and options.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)536-544
Number of pages9
JournalInternational health
Volume11
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 13 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 The Author(s) 2019. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • HIV/AIDS
  • Nigeria
  • PMTCT
  • health workers
  • reproductive rights
  • safer conception knowledge

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