Assessment of Condom use for prevention of HIV/AIDS among members of Ethiopian Army at Zalambesa front Tigray Regional State.

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Addis Abeba Universty


Since the beginning of the pandemic, AIDS has been spreading at alarming rate worldwide. Ethiopia is one of the most seriously affected countries in the region, with the national prevalence rate of 4.4%. Institutional based cross- Sectional survey through a self-administered structured and semi- structured questionnaires were conducted from December 2004 to January 2005 in randomly selected brigade in zalambesa front northern Ethiopia to assess the utilization of condom and highrisk sexual behavior of the militaries. A total of 845 soldiers participate in the quantitative study. 4 FGD were conducted in the qualitative study. From those 840 who completed the questionnaires, 486 (58.8) were PVT, 267 (32.3%) other rank and 73(8.8%) officers. Among respondents, 837 (99. 9%) heard about male condom, and 799 (95.9%) reported that they could get condom whenever they want. Among the total respondents 828(98.8%) ever had sexual intercourse (sexual active), from those 781 (94.1%) ever used condom and 71.2% used condom consistently. The mean age of first sexual intercourse was 19.6+ 3.2 years, most of the respondents 762 (90.8%) had been sexually active during the previous 12 months, of those 582(76.4 %) had sex with regular partners, 534(70.1 %) had commercial partner and 412(54.1%) had non – regular non commercial partner in the last 12 month. Similarly most of the military personal had multiple partners, 52.4% and 32.7% had sex with commercial and non- regular partner respectively. Of the 429(80.3%) who were sexually active with commercials sex worker, 398 (92.8%) have used condom in the previous 12 months and 279 (71.0%) used condom consistently. The reason given for not using condom was drinking alcohol. About 99% of the respondent knew about STIs, and urethral discharge was the most common known symptom and sign followed by Genital ulcer 683 (82%) and 511(61.4%) respectively. Almost all, 822 (99.0%) of the respondents ever heard about HIV/AIDS, about 626 (77.4%) of the respondent knew a person who was infected with HIV or who has died of AIDS. About 89 (11.2%) and 136 (17.8%) of the respondents reported that mosquito bite and eating raw meat prepared by a person infected by HIV transmitted the disease of HIV/AIDS respectively. At least half of the respondents 49.1% were said they are put at risk of getting HIV/AIDS. From the respondents 91.5%, 79.6% and 85.6% mentioned that using condom, being faithfully and abstaining as a preventive method respectively. Similarly 89.3% of the military personnels heard about VCT for HIV and 209 (25.6%) previously under gone voluntary counseling and testing for HIV. In conclusion, knowledge of condom and HIV/AIDS was high but the utilization of condom among the study population was low, so there is gap between knowledge and practices. It is recommended that the above weakness be removed by continuous health education on the behavior of military and focused to wards military personnel (peer leader discussion). Moreover provision of vast VCT program is needed. VI



Assessment of Condom use for prevention of HIV/AIDS