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NCJ Number: 229384 Find in a Library
Title: Officer Perceptions of Risk of Contracting HIV/AIDS in Prison: A Two-State Comparison
Journal: Prison Journal  Volume:89  Issue:4  Dated:December 2009  Pages:440-459
Author(s): Leanne Fiftal Alarid; James W. Marquart
Date Published: December 2009
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: University of Missouri
Columbia, MO 65201
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the relationship between correctional officers’ knowledge of HIV and their perceptions of risk.
Abstract: Results found that the majority of the staff felt inadequately informed about inmate infectious diseases and inadequately supplied with personal protective equipment in their institution. Officers who perceived a higher risk of contracting HIV scored lower on the HIV knowledge test and had less formal education. Findings reinforce the need for training or continuing education, particularly in the area of casual transmission of HIV. Fear of contact was also a predictor of knowledge level, whereby the officers who were more fearful also knew less about HIV. Correctional officers who viewed tattooing, IV drug use, anal sex, and oral sex as common at the unit where they worked were more likely to perceive a higher risk of contracting HIV. Although the accuracy of prisoner behaviors that might place them at risk could not be verified, these findings provide correctional administrators insight as to factors that influence perceptions of risk at the workplace. An inverse relationship was found between age and perceived risk; however, risk level did not significantly vary by length of employment, race/ethnicity, or assigned shift. Study results suggest the importance of continuous training not only in the area of HIV/AIDS, but in the broader area of infectious diseases, which should also include hepatitis, tuberculosis, syphilis, and other new emerging diseases. Data were collected from 377 prison correctional officers from Texas and 176 from Missouri. Tables and references
Main Term(s): AIDS/HIV in correctional facilities; Risk management
Index Term(s): AIDS/HIV workplace policies/programs; Behavior modification; Communicable diseases; Correctional officer training
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