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Assessment of the knowledge, attitude and practice of pregnant women towards hepatitis B infection seen at a tertiary hospital in the Philippines

Maria Angelica B. Arada, MD and Stella Marie L. Jose, MD, MHPEd, FPOGS, FPIDSOG
Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Philippine General Hospital, University of the Philippines-Manila

Background: Multiple studies have described the insufficiency in knowledge, attitude and practices of the general population and of healthcare workers towards HBV infection across different countries.

Objective: This study aims to assess the knowledge level and correlate it with the attitude and practices of pregnant women towards Hepatitis B infection.

Methodology: This is a descriptive study on pregnant women consulting for their first antenatal visit in the outpatient department of a tertiary hospital. A structured self-administered questionnaire, adapted from a study by Han et al, was reviewed and modified by infectious disease experts, and then validated prior to use. 164 pregnant patients, aged 18-45 years old, were recruited. Logistic regression analysis was used to correlate attitude and practice to knowledge scores.

Results: Most participants (48.78%) belonged to the 18-25 year old age group. Only 7.32% of the participants answered all knowledge questions correctly while 39.02% answered at least 2/3 of the questions correctly. Knowledge scores were not associated with patient demographic information but were correlated with their attitude and practices towards Hepatitis B infection.

Conclusion: A lack of knowledge regarding Hepatitis B infection exists among pregnant patients. Government and private institutions must invest time and effort to bridge this knowledge gap. Health promotion should be directed towards the pregnant population since vertical transmission remains to be the most common route of transmission in our country.