Awareness and Attitudes About HIV Among Pregnant Women in Aksu, Northwest China

Rena Maimaiti1, Rune Andersson*, 2
1 Child Preventive Care Department of First Affiliated Hospital, Xinjiang Medical University, Urumqi, and Xinjiang, China
2 Research and Development Centre, Skaraborg Hospital, Skövde, Sweden

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© Maimaiti and Andersson; Licensee Bentham Open.

open-access license: This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.

* Address correspondence to this author at the Research and Development Centre, Skaraborg Hospital, Skövde, Sweden; Tel: +46 500 431137; Fax: +46 500- 431121 Email:


The Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region has a firmly established HIV epidemic among its intravenous drug user (IDU) population. Local sex workers were also found to be positive in 1998. A descriptive, cross-sectional survey of knowledge about HIV/AIDS and attitudes among consecutively selected pregnant women was conducted November 2005 in Aksu Prefecture, north-western China, with a population on 2 million with about 25 000 pregnancies per year. A total of 291 pregnant women participated. We found a limited knowledge on mother-to child transmission with several misconceptions. The AIDS campaigns have been successful in making all the women aware of HIV as a sexually transmitted disease. However, the common belief that social contact causes transmission gives a high risk that patients are stigmatized. Obviously, it is important to design HIV information strategies that target pregnant women in north-western China.