Introduction Non-occupational post-exposure prophylaxis (NPEP), a medical intervention to prevent HIV infection from risk behaviours conducted by general public, has been advocated by the Centre for Disease Control since 2013. However, general awareness has not yet risen. The aim of this study was to evaluate the knowledge of NPEP among subjects seeking for anonymous screening for sexually transmitted diseases (STD), healthcare professionals and general population in Taiwan.
Methods A cross sectional study was conducted with a structured questionnaire for 200 subjects who sought for anonymous STD screening, 125 healthcare professionals who worked in the departments of emergency and infectious diseases and 200 subjects who were recruited from the community to participate in the study. The questionnaire contains 10 items, which embedded NPEP-related knowledge. Statistical analysis was performed on the responses so as to ascertain the knowledge level of NPEP across the different groups.
Results Only 56% of those receiving anonymous STD screening and 34% of the general population group have ever heard of NPEP, while 83.2% of healthcare professionals have heard of NPEP. A significantly higher proportion of healthcare professionals was found to know about NPEP (p < 0.001). Overall, the response rate for correct answers for NPEP-related knowledge was found to be significantly higher for the subjects seeking for anonymous STD screening (24.1%; healthcare professionals, 2.9%; general population, 0%; p < 0.001).
Conclusion Our study results indicate that over 80% of healthcare professionals know about NPEP, however without correct knowledge. Those who seek for anonymous STD screening have a better understanding of NPEP. Efforts should be reinforced to raise the NPEP awareness.
Disclosure of interest statement The Australasian Society for HIV Medicine recognises the considerable contribution that industry partners make to professional and research activities. We also recognise the need for transparency of disclosure of potential conflicts of interest by acknowledging these relationships in publications and presentations. Nothing to declare.