Pregnant women's awareness and knowledge of mother-to-child transmission of HIV in South Central China.Acta Obstet Gynecol Scand. 2008; 87(8):831-6.AO
China has, in recent years, seen an increase in the number of HIV-positive children due to the increase in number of HIV-positive women. The purpose of this study was to investigate the awareness and knowledge of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and its prevention among pregnant women attending the antenatal clinics in South Central China.
The study was carried out in three antenatal clinics of three hospitals from February 2005 to March 2006, and it was based on personal interviews and questionnaires designed to assess the pregnant women's awareness about HIV/AIDS, evaluate their knowledge of possible routes of transmission, particularly mother-to-child transmission, and determine their familiarity with measures that prevent vertical transmission from mother to child. Two thousand three hundred and ninety pregnant women were included in the study.
All individuals were aware of HIV/AIDS. The majority (91%) of those women were aware that HIV/AIDS can coexist with pregnancy but only 64% had heard about mother-to-child transmission. Transplacental route, vaginal delivery and breastfeeding were identified as routes of transmission from mother to child by 85%, 60% and 20% of respondents, respectively. Cesarean section was believed to be a route of transmission by 55% of respondents, but no one identified cesarean section as a method of prevention of mother-to-child transmission.
The level of awareness and knowledge of HIV/AIDS among pregnant women attending our antenatal clinics seems to be superficial; more education and knowledge about mother-to-child transmission are needed in China.