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Introduction: Leprosy is a chronic infectious disease that is associated with serious morbidity and is a disease of public health
concern because of the social stigma. Knowledge, attitudes and practices of medical practitioners is vital in the control.
Objective: The aim of the study was to assess the knowledge, attitudes and practices of medical officers and interns regarding leprosy
Methods: This cross sectional study was conducted among medical officers and interns in University of Nigeria teaching Hospital and
Enugu State University Teaching Hospital, both in Enugu. Data was collected using a self reported questionnaire on the knowledge,
attitude and practices towards Leprosy. Data was analyzed using SPSS version 21 and statistical significance of association between
variables was assessed using Chi-square test at p<0.05. Ethical clearance was obtained from the Research Ethics Committees of both
Results: All the 26 medical officers and 262 interns returned the completed questionnaires. In the study, interns showed higher
knowledge 78.2% than medical officers 60.4%. Knowledge of the respondents on diagnosis, management and prevention of leprosy
was adequate. However, their overall attitudes and practices towards leprosy were poor. 50% of them would not eat, 79.9% would not
marry and 34.7% of them would not agree to perform cardio-pulmonary resuscitation (CPR) to persons affected by leprosy. Only
33.3% would like to work in any leprosy referral hospital, while 5.1% would not agree to be admitted in the same hospital with persons
affected by leprosy and 31.3% would like to isolate people affected with leprosy from the general community. Agree to perform CPR
and category of profession relationship was not statistically significant (X2=8.296, df=4, p=0.081), but the relationship with the age of
the participants was significant (X2=17.111, df=8, p=0.029).
Conclusion: The study revealed there is adequate knowledge among medical officers and interns with regards to leprosy in the two
hospitals. However, their attitudes and practices are poor. There is need to organize training programs at regular intervals for interns
and medical officers in out-patients departments.
Otache A E is affiliated to University of Nigeria, Nigeria.