Voluntary Counseling and Testing Utilization and Associated Factors among Arba Minch University Students, South EthiopiaSelamawit Dagne1*, Eskezyiaw Agedew2, Diresilign Misikir2 and Desta Haftu2
- Corresponding Author:
- Selamawit Dagne
Lecturer, Arba Minch University
Public Health 21, Arba Minch, Ethiopia
E-mail: [email protected]
Received date: January 19, 2017; Accepted date: June 21, 2017; Published date: June 28, 2017
Citation: Dagne S, Agedew E, Misikir D, Haftu D (2017) Voluntary Counseling and Testing Utilization and Associated Factors among Arba Minch University Students, South Ethiopia. J AIDS Clin Res 8:704. doi:10.4172/2155-6113.1000704
Copyright: © 2017 Dagne S, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Background: Voluntary Counseling and Testing (VCT) is the key entry point to prevention, care, treatment and support services, where people learn whether they are infected and are helped to understand the implications of their HIV status and make informed choices for the future. Objective: The main objective of this study was to assess voluntary counseling and testing utilization and associated factors among Arba Minch University students. Method: An Institution-based cross-sectional study design with quantitative data collection method was employed among 764 students drawn from selected departments of Arba Minch University; by using multi-stage sampling technique. Data was analyzed by using SPSS version 20. Results: A total of 764 people responded the questionnaire out of 805 proposed study participants with the response rate of 94%, of whom 77.6% were male. From the study participants 97.9% were knowledgeable about HIV transmission and prevention. The prevalence of HIV testing was 61.5% (95% CI=0.58, 0.65). The findings also showed that the participants who are knowledgeable about HIV (AOR=4.46, 95% CI=2.00, 9.89), who are willing to have VCT (AOR=3.22, 95% CI=1.98, 5.25), who heard about presence of confidential testing (AOR=3.66, 95% CI=2.38, 5.62) and who had sex (AO=1.71, CI=1.19, 2.48) were more likely to be tested. Feeling at risk, fear of a positive result and fear of being stigmatized were reported as being the main barriers to VCT utilization. Conclusion: Knowledge about HIV and VCT, willingness to have VCT and presence of confidential testing were independent factors identified as predictors for increased VCT service utilization. Recommendation: More emphases should been given by concerned governmental and non-governmental organizations on independent factors identified as predictors for increased VCT service utilization and removing the main barriers to voluntary counseling and testing.