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Revista de Saúde Pública

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FERREIRA, Maria Paula  and  GRUPO DE ESTUDOS EM POPULACAO, SEXUALIDADE E AIDS. Knowledge and risk perception on HIV/AIDS by Brazilian population, 1998 and 2005. Rev. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.42, suppl.1, pp.65-71. ISSN 1518-8787.

OBJECTIVE: To describe the level of knowledge and risk perception on HIV/AIDS of the Brazilian Population. METHODS: Data base from a national survey on sexual behavior and HIV/AIDS risk perception in the Brazilian population, in 1998 and 2005, were used. A synthetic indicator was used, composed by nine questions on the level of knowledge and risk perception on the forms of transmission of the virus and risk situations, according to population subgroups. RESULTS: Men increased their level of knowledge in the period, reaching the same information level of women. Among youngsters, there was no significant increase in knowledge, and the difference between sexes was absent in this dimension. Regarding risk perception, there was an increase in the proportion of those that declared they were not under risk of HIV/AIDS contamination. CONCLUSIONS: Despite the increase in the level of general knowledge, the study's results indicate the need for actions and programs of HIV/AIDS prevention in the general population and, especially, with youngsters.

Keywords : Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome [prevention & control]; Sexual Behavior; Risk Factors; Health Knowledge [Attitudes, Practice]; Brazil; Cross-sectional studies; Population Studies in Public Health.

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