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title:Are Care Takers of Link Worker’s Scheme of HIV/AIDS Knowledgeable Enouth? Assessment Study of Link Workers Scheme in Surat District

Author:Parmar Rohit, Desai Binita, Kosambiya JK, Solanky Priti, Prajapati Shailesh, Kantharia SL

Keywords:Link Worker, Volunteer, HIV, STI

Type:Original Article

Abstract:Introduction: Gujarat State AIDS Control Society with support from UNICEF Gujarat has initiated as unique project for prevention of HIV /AIDS at rural set up since 2008, which is known as Link Workers’ scheme. Link Workers (LWs) are working in each cluster of villages around a 5,000+ population village which will serve as the node for intervention. They are supported in their work by village level volunteers selected from the available groups in the community. Methodology: 140 Link workers and 70 volunteers from 70 villages of 14 blocks of district Surat were invited for the study. Due to few vacant posts, total 183 participants took part in the study; out of these 117 were link workers (LWs) while 66 were volunteers. Their Knowledge regarding HIV/AIDS and STI were assessed on a predesigned pretested semi structured study tool. Result: 96.59% link workers and 93.44% volunteers had knowledge about condom use as a method of preventing HIV infection. The concern issue is that only 11.11% LWs and 13.64% volunteers revealed that HIV testing during ANC check up can also prevent HIV transmission from mother to child, inspite of receiving induction training. Only 74.36% LWs and 68.31% volunteers were able to tell about three or more HIV preventive methods. Recommendations: Refresher training and exposure visit to HIV care centres are needed for these workers to strengthen their knowledge.

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