Published online May 14, 2012. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v18.i18.2238
Revised: September 19, 2011
Accepted: November 9, 2011
Published online: May 14, 2012
AIM: To study knowledge levels and attitudes of health care providers toward patients with hepatitis C virus infection in Guilan, a northern province of Iran.
METHODS: This cross-sectional study was performed on 239 health care professionals from the Razi Hospital, including doctors, nurses, and operating room technicians. The questionnaires consisted of questions on demographic characteristics, knowledge levels, and attitudes toward hepatitis C patients. The questionnaire was tested in a pilot study and validated by Cronbach’s alpha coefficient. Data were analyzed using SPSS16 software.
RESULTS: The mean ± SD knowledge score was 17.43 ± 2.65 (from a total of 22). 51.9% of the participants achieved scores higher than the mean. There was a significant relationship between knowledge score and age (P = 0.001), gender (P = 0.0001), occupational history (P = 0.0001), and educational history (P = 0.027). There was also a significant relationship between attitude level and age (P = 0.002), gender (P = 0.0001), occupational history (P = 0.0001), and educational history (P = 0.035). Physicians were significantly more knowledgeable and showed more positive attitudes. There was a positive correlation between knowledge and attitude scores (P = 0.02).
CONCLUSION: Discriminatory attitudes are common among health care providers toward hepatitis C patients. It is therefore necessary to improve their knowledge level and attitude toward this disease.