Knowledge about HIV in people with schizophrenia: a general population comparison.

Research paper by Marc M De Hert, Leen L Trappeniers, Martien M Wampers, Pierre P Van Damme, Guido G Van Hal, Joseph J Peuskens

Indexed on: 23 Jun '11Published on: 23 Jun '11Published in: Clinical schizophrenia & related psychoses


Patients with schizophrenia are at higher risk for human immunodeficiency virus infection (HIV) positivity compared to the general population. Only a limited number of studies have evaluated the knowledge about HIV in people with schizophrenia.To compare the knowledge about HIV between people with schizophrenia and the general population.The knowledge about HIV was assessed with a questionnaire used in the general health survey of the Belgian population in 2004.Patients with schizophrenia had a significantly better knowledge about nontransmissible contacts compared to the general population (43.2% vs. 32.6%, df=1, chi-square=11.0; p=0.0009). There was no difference regarding the knowledge about protective methods (50.7% vs. 55.9%, df=1, chi-square=2.45; p=0.12). Patients had a better appreciation about the severity and treatment options for acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) (54.6% vs. 37.9%, df=1, chi-square=25.91; p<0.0001).Although the overall knowledge about HIV in patients with schizophrenia is better than that of the general population, it is far from optimal. There is a need for systematic educational programs to improve knowledge.

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