The Daily Monitor (Addis Ababa)
June 26, 2002
Posted to the web June 26, 2002
By Staff Reporter
Preliminary results of a survey on HIV/AIDS revealed that level of behavioral change in Ethiopia is low.
It was disclosed yesterday at the UNECA, that during 2001-2002 HIV/AIDS Behavioral Surveillance Survey (BSS) over
30,000 rural and urban dwellers in Ethiopia especially youth-were interviewed about sexual partnerships and condom use.
The findings indicated that people are still engaged in risky sexual behaviors that expose them to high risk of being infected with HIV and other sexually transmitted diseases.
Dr. Getnet Mitike, Department of Community Health at the Addis Ababa University (AAU) said that the key findings in the
BSS showed that close to 98 % of the study population are aware of HIV/AIDS.
He however added that only 60 % of the same population knew the three prevention methods.
The sample groups, according to Dr. Getnet, consisted of long distance bus drivers, taxi and truck drivers, military personnel, female sex workers, in and out-of-school youth of both sexes, farmers, pastoralists and factory workers.
The study also showed that one in five of married respondents admitted to having had multiple partners.
In the survey, multiple sexual partnership was found to be high. It was also found that there was much similarity in the sexual behavior of those who knew that abstinence and monogamy were modes of preventing HIV infection, and those who did not said Dr. Getnet.
Present at the occasion, President Girma W/Giorgis emphasized the relevance of the survey saying that the information will assist in the planning of appropriate HIV prevention and control mechanisms in the country.
The National AIDS Council Secretariat, AAU, UNITED STATES Agency for International Development, Family Health
International and other partners implemented the survey.
All regions of the country were included in the survey, with the aim of helping Ethiopia develop a systematic and comprehensive National HIV/AIDS monitoring and evaluation plan that will track the trends of the epidemic.
During the presentation it was pointed out that more commitment, more targeted and effective multiple dimensional interventions, and well coordinated monitoring and evaluation system were required to prevent the spread of the epidemic.
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