Knowledge, Attitude and Practices Regarding Ebola Virus Disease among Medical Clerks and Interns

Sheng-Hsiang Ma1,2, Meng-Yu Chen1*

2015 Vol.31 NO.7

Correspondence Author: Meng-Yu Chen

  • 1.Office of Preventive Medicine, Centers for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan
  • 2.School of Medicine, National Yang-Ming University


The epidemic of Ebola virus disease(EVD) in West Africa has been characterized by the World Health Organization asone of the most challenging outbreak to date. Cases outside Africa havegenerated huge media attention and public panic. Medical clerks and interns whostart to work in clinical settings might have some fear of the disease. The aimof this study is to evaluate knowledge, attitude and practices regarding EVDamong medical clerks and interns. A descriptive cross-sectional survey wasperformed online in December 2014. All twelve medical schools in Taiwan werepurposively selected and 131 medical students (clerks or interns) from theseschools completed the survey. The results showed that the internet andtelevision were the two main sources of EVD information among medical students;however, these two means were given low trust in comparison with other sourcesof information such as scientific articles or schools and hospitals. Moststudents had sufficient knowledge about EVD, but knowledge of EVD transmission was relatively inadequate. Participation in training courses on EVDsignificantly affected level of knowledge. Most medical students showednegative attitude towards public health preparedness in Taiwan, but those whohad attended training courses possessed positive attitude. Most medicalstudents reported no changes in practices since this epidemic. This studydemonstrates that television and internet should be effectively used as part ofcommunication channels with the medical students. Schools and hospitals shouldincrease the quality and quantity of EVD training for medical students.Infection control measures and public health responses in addition to clinicalaspects of EVD should be included in future training courses.

Keywords:Ebola virus disease;Medical student;Knowledge;Altitude;Practice