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AIDS knowledge, occupational precautions, and public education activities among law enforcement officers and first responders.


J Public Health Policy. 1994 Winter;15(4):460-9. Unique Identifier :

A survey on AIDS was administered within a large, southern California jurisdiction to law enforcement officers and first responders (paramedics, firefighters). Respondents had accurate knowledge about AIDS but several incorrect perceptions about HIV transmission; a substantial proportion believed that HIV could be contracted from casual contact. AIDS training was not frequent. Self-assessment of HIV risk was medium to high risk in one-third of respondents, and was largely attributable to fear of occupational exposure. Appropriate precautionary professional practices were adopted at low frequencies, with respondents adopting preventive measures less than 50% of the time on 7 of 10 measures. Seventeen percent reportedly received requests for HIV/AIDS education from members of the public, which is incongruous with law enforcement officers' and first responders' demonstrated level of knowledge about HIV transmission. It was concluded that improved educational programs on HIV/AIDS are needed for law enforcement officers and first responders to increase the use of occupational precautions in the field, and to improve the accuracy of public AIDS education activities conducted by these professionals.

Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome/DIAGNOSIS/*PREVENTION & CONTROL/TRANSMISSION *Allied Health Personnel California *Health Education Human *Knowledge, Attitudes, Practice Occupational Diseases/*PREVENTION & CONTROL *Police JOURNAL ARTICLE


Information in this article was accurate in June 30, 1995. 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.