Socio-Demographic Characteristics, Knowledge of HIV/AIDS, HCT Centres and Willingness to use Toll-Free Telephone Lines on HIV/AIDS Counselling Services in Nigeria
Keywords:HIV/AIDS counselling, HIV/AIDS knowledge, HCT centres, Willingness to use toll-free lines
Background: Accessing high quality, confidential HIV/AIDS counselling services is of great concern to stakeholders in Nigeria. Toll-free telephone HIV/AIDS counselling was introduced in Nigeria through a collaboration between the National Agency for the Control of AIDS (NACA) and Airtel (a leading telecommunications company). This study examines socio-demographic factors, knowledge of HIV/AIDS and HIV Counselling & Testing (HCT) centres as correlates of willingness to use toll-free telephone HIV/AIDS counselling in Nigeria.
Methods: Data from a sample of 1,867 Nigerians (938 males, 929 females) aged 15-64 were analysed with chi-square to examine the relationships between geographical zone, gender, age-group, access to telephone, knowledge of HIV/AIDS and HCT centres; and willingness to use toll-free HIV/AIDS counselling.
Results: Results showed gender as well as age-group differences in willingness to use toll-free lines. Access to telephone was significantly correlated to willingness to use toll-free lines. Finally, the findings showed that knowledge of HIV/AIDS and HCT centre was significantly associated with willingness to use toll-free lines independently. Also, most respondents were willing to use telephone services on HIV/AIDS counselling.
Conclusion: This study highlights the need to encourage Nigerians to use toll-free lines on HIV/AIDS counselling irrespective of their gender and age-group. Access to telephones as well as increase in knowledge of HIV/AIDS and HCT centres are important in increasing the willingness to use the toll-free lines effectively.