Resource Logo

Desire to treat HIV-infected patients: similarities and differences across health-care professions.


AIDS. 1994 Jan;8(1):117-21. Unique Identifier : AIDSLINE MED/94280686

OBJECTIVES: To determine attitudinal predictors of health-care providers' willingness to treat HIV-infected patients. We also tested the hypothesis that differences between dental and medical students in their expressed desire to treat HIV-infected patients result from differences in their clinical exposure to bloodborne pathogens and their clinical training. DESIGN: A cross-sectional design was used to administer a self-report questionnaire format to preserve subject anonymity. METHODS: A questionnaire was used to assess attitudes, knowledge, and behavior associated with the care of HIV-infected patients. Both bivariate statistics and logistic regression techniques were used to determine factors related to the desire to treat HIV-infected patients. RESULTS: Compared with dental students, medical students expressed a greater desire to treat HIV-infected patients. However, the attitudinal predictors of a desire to treat were similar across both groups. The two most important predictors were the degree to which respondents perceived a personal risk of HIV exposure and their sense of professional obligation to treat all patients. Furthermore, knowledge levels were unrelated to desire to treat. CONCLUSIONS: These results suggest that educational interventions aimed simply at increasing a provider's knowledge of HIV may not be effective in changing behavior.

Adult Analysis of Variance *Attitude of Health Personnel Cross-Sectional Studies Female Human HIV Infections/PSYCHOLOGY/*THERAPY Male Odds Ratio Questionnaires Regression Analysis Students, Dental/*PSYCHOLOGY Students, Medical/*PSYCHOLOGY JOURNAL ARTICLE


Information in this article was accurate in September 30, 1994. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.