oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Knowledge about AIDS and self-reported sexual behaviour among adults in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe

Volume 34, Issue 5
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



Knowledge about AIDS and self-reported sexual behaviour was examined among 381 adults in Bulawayo, Zimbabwe, from December 1987 to February 1988. Most subjects knew that AIDS is fatal and incurable. However, over 40 per cent of subjects believed that washing after sexual intercourse greatly reduces the risk of Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection. Over half the sample did not know that a condom is an effective precaution against HIV infection. More than half the sample believed that HIV can be contracted from cups and toilet seats and about 40 per cent believed that mosquitos can transmit HIV. Educated subjects were more knowledgeable about AIDS than the less educated subjects. Males (M = 7,13) reported significantly more lifetime sexual partners than females (M= 2,02). Roughly, a quarter of males reported coital contact with a prostitute. The implications of these results for health education are considered.

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