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Predicting intention to use voluntary HIV counseling and testing services among health professionals in Jimma, Ethiopia, using the theory of planned behavior

Authors Abamecha F, Godesso A, Girma E

Received 1 June 2013

Accepted for publication 13 August 2013

Published 14 October 2013 Volume 2013:6 Pages 399—407

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/JMDH.S49339

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2


Fira Abamecha,1 Ameyu Godesso,2 Eshetu Girma3

1Department of Nursing, Mizan-Tepi University, Mizan, 2Department of Sociology, Jimma University, Jimma, 3Department of Health Education and Behavioral Sciences, Jimma University, Jimma, Ethiopia

Background: To endorse involvement in voluntary HIV counseling and testing (VCT), it is essential to recognize factors that influence people in deciding whether to access VCT services and their underlying route factors. Theory of planned behavior (TPB) constitutes a proficient framework for predicting behaviors and intentions.
Objective: The aim of the study reported here was to assess the predicting ability of TPB in determining the intended use of VCT services among health professionals in Jimma, southwest Ethiopia.
Methods: This was an institution-based cross-sectional quantitative study of a sample of 336 health professionals in 12 selected districts of Jimma, southwest Ethiopia between February 5 to March 28, 2012. Data were collected using structured questionnaire self-administered by the study participants. A hierarchal multivariable linear regression model was used to predict the role of TPB constructs that can influence the intention to use VCT services.
Results: The constructs of TPB explained the variability in intention to use VCT by 27% (R2 adjusted = 0.27). The standardized regression coefficients showed that the strongest predictor of intention to use VCT was subjective norms (β = 0.32, P < 0.0005) followed by attitude (β = 0.21, P < 0.002). Perceived behavioral control was not a significant predictor of intention to use VCT among the study group (P = 0.12).
Conclusion: The study revealed the possibility of describing the intention to use VCT among health professionals using TPB, with perceived social pressure being the leading predictor. In light of this, health intervention programs should be designed to develop health professionals’ ability to resist norms that oppose the use of VCT and to change community-held norms against VCT use, provided they help individuals develop a positive attitude toward the services.

Keywords: HIV/AIDS, VCT, health professionals, intention, TPB

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