KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDES, RISK BEHAVIOURS AND PREVENTIVE PRACTICES ON SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES AMONG STUDENTS IN A PUBLIC UNIVERSITY IN MALAYSIA

  • Fatimah Sham Faculty of Health Science, Puncak Alam Campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 42300 Malaysia; Maternofetal and Embryology Research Group, Faculty of Medicine, Sungai Buloh Campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 47000 Malaysia
  • Syafiqah Yaakub Faculty of Health Science, Puncak Alam Campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 42300 Malaysia
  • Filzah Nur Fawati Faculty of Health Science, Puncak Alam Campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 42300 Malaysia
  • Siti Jazilah Fatinni Faculty of Health Science, Puncak Alam Campus, Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), 42300 Malaysia
  • Ain Aqiela Azamuddin Faculty of Computer and Mathematic, Universiti Teknologi MARA, Johor Branch, Segamat Campus, 85200 Segamat, Johor, Malaysia
Keywords: Sexually-transmitted diseases, Knowledge, University students, Prevention

Abstract

Increased rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) among young adults between the ages of 15 and 24 years old had been one of the major concerns of the world. For each of the 20 million new recorded STDs cases, people within those age group were responsible for more than 50% of them. This cross-sectional study was done to determine the knowledge, attitudes, risky behaviours and preventive practices related to sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs) among undergraduate students in a public university in Malaysia. A total of 1327 university students aged between 19 and 27 years were surveyed by using a self-administered questionnaire. The majority (75.1%) had good knowledge on STDs, and a significant number of students (53.8%) had acceptable preventive practice. Marital status was associated not only to the students’ level of knowledge but also with their preventive practices. Despite having a good knowledge of STDs, students in Science and Technology academic cluster perceived unacceptable preventive practices. This study highlighted some misconceptions about STDs, preventive practices and risky behaviours, raising concerns about a likely future rise in STD incidence. Therefore, interventions to implement strengthened health education on STD-related issues were required to bring change in practices, along with knowledge and attitudes.

References

World Health Organization. (2020). Massive proportion of world’s population are living with herpes infection. Department News. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/news-room/detail/01-05-2020-massive-proportion-of-world-s-population-are-living-with-herpes-infection

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. STDs in Adolescents and Young Adults - 2016 STD Surveillance Report. Centers Dis Control Prev. 2017

Audinarayana, N. (2010). Sexual Behaviour and Its Determinants among Young Never-married Male Factory Workers in a South Indian Knit City. 18(2), 155–174.

Da Ros CT, Da Silva Schmitt C. Global epidemiology of sexually transmitted diseases. Asian J Androl. 2008;10(1):110–4.

Ministry of Health. (2019). Country Progress Report on HIV / AIDS Response.

Awang H, Wong LIP, Jani R, Low Wahyun. Knowledge Of Sexually Transmitted Diseases And Sexual Behaviours Among Malaysian Male Youths. 2014;214–24.

Doster A, Doster AM. The Knowledge of Sexually Transmitted Diseases Among College Students. 2018.

Soleymani S, Abdul Rahman H, Lekhraj R, Mohd Zulkefli NA, Matinnia N. A cross-sectional study to explore postgraduate students’ understanding of and beliefs about sexual and reproductive health in a public university, Malaysia. Reprod Health. 2015;12(1).

Folasayo AT, Oluwasegun AJ, Samsudin S, Saudi SNS, Osman M, Hamat RA. Assessing the knowledge level, attitudes, risky behaviors and preventive practices on sexually transmitted diseases among university students as future healthcare providers in the central zone of Malaysia: A cross-sectional study. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2017;14(2):1–14.

Svensson, Linn SW. Knowledge of and attitudes to sexually transmitted diseases among Thai university students. Caring Sci. 2013;18–21.

Edith M. Awareness of Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) Including HIV/AIDS among Undergraduate Students of University of Abuja, Nigeria. Br J Appl Sci Technol. 2014;4(4):705–17.

Nsuami JM, Sanders LS, Taylor SN. American Journal of Health Education. (October 2014):37–41.

Mulu W, Abera B, Yimer M. Knowledge , attitude and practices on HIV / AIDS among students of Bahir Dar University. Sci J Public Heal. 2014;2(2):78–86.

Bell J. Why embarrassment inhibits the acquisition and use of condoms: A qualitative approach to understanding risky sexual behaviour. J Adolesc [Internet]. 2009;32(2):379–91. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.adolescence.2008.01.002

King KA, Vidourek RA. Condoms , Sex , and Sexually Transmitted Diseases : Exploring Sexual Health Issues Among Asian-Indian College Students. 2014.

Zin NM, Ishak I, Manoharan K. Knowledge, attitude and practice towards sexually transmitted diseases amongst the inmates of women shelters homes at Klang Valley. BMC Public Health. 2019;19(Suppl 4):1–7.

Awaluddin SM. Prevalence of sexual activity in older Malaysian adolescents and associated factors. 2015;(January).

Manaf MRA, Tahir MM, Sidi H, Midin M, Jaafar NRN, Das S, et al. Pre-marital sex and its predicting factors among Malaysian youths. Compr Psychiatry [Internet]. 2014;55(SUPPL. 1):S82–8. Available from: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.comppsych.2013.03.008

Brown JD, L’Engle KL. X-rated: Sexual attitudes and behaviors associated with U.S. early adolescents’ exposure to sexually explicit media. Communic Res. 2009;36(1):129–51.

Jahanfar S, Lye MS, Rampal L. A randomised controlled trial of peer-adult-led intervention on improvement of knowledge, attitudes and behaviour of university students regarding HIV/AIDS in Malaysia. Singapore Med J. 2009;50(2):173–80.

Matias N, Priscilla R e SN, Carlos LT, Daniela CC, Erika AS. Health-risk behavior differences between boarding and non-resident students: Brazilian adolescent National School Health Survey. Arch Public Heal. 2020;78(1):1–9.

Zhang D, Pan H, Cui B, Law F, Farrar J, Ba-Thein W. Sexual behaviors and awareness of sexually transmitted infections among Chinese university students. J Infect Dev Ctries. 2013;7(12):966–74.

Anwar M, Syed Azhar SS, Keivan A, Tahir MK. Awareness of school students on sexually transmitted infections (STIs) and their sexual behavior: a cross-sectional study conducted in Pulau Pinang, Malaysia. BMC Public Health [Internet]. 2010;10:47. Available from: http://ovidsp.ovid.com/ovidweb.cgi?T=JS&PAGE=reference&D=emed9&NEWS=N&AN=20113511

Published
2020-12-31
How to Cite
Fatimah Sham, Yaakub, S., Filzah Nur Fawati, Siti Jazilah Fatinni, & Ain Aqiela Azamuddin. (2020). KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDES, RISK BEHAVIOURS AND PREVENTIVE PRACTICES ON SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES AMONG STUDENTS IN A PUBLIC UNIVERSITY IN MALAYSIA. Malaysian Journal of Public Health Medicine, 20(3), 100-108. https://doi.org/10.37268/mjphm/vol.20/no.3/art.610