According to a survey conducted for Sidaction, a quarter of young people believe that AIDS can be cured. A misconception among many.
While the weekend of Sidaction is underway, it is clear that the misconceptions about the disease die hard. According to a Ifop-Bilendi * survey published on Wednesday, March 21, 26% of French people aged 15 to 24 think that there are drugs to cure AIDS (13% more than in 2009), 21% a vaccine can prevent the transmission of the virus and 32% are less likely than others to be infected.
"What is worrying is that these proportions have increased significantly in a relatively small number of years, on things that seemed long since acquired," said Sidaction's managing director, Florence Thune, in Paris. "The lack of information and the fact that we are talking less about the HIV virus is a wake-up call," she adds.
Thus, 11% of young people surveyed by Ifop believe that it is possible to know if a person has AIDS by observing it carefully, when 21% of them imagine that HIV can be transmitted by saliva and kiss, by sweating (18%) or drinking from the glass of an HIV-positive person (16%).
Some 20% of young people surveyed also believe that they are poorly informed about the virus, almost twice as many as in 2015 (11%). 48% were not aware of emergency treatment following risk-taking and 42% did not know where to go for screening. The association Sidaction already thought last year that the lack of information of the French on HIV was "alarming".
Of the 150,000 people with AIDS in France, 25,000 are unaware that they are HIV-positive. In 2016, the number of people who have discovered their HIV status is estimated at around 6,000, according to the INVS. The category of men who have sex with men is still the most affected.
* Ifop and Bilendi survey for Sidaction conducted by self-administered questionnaire online from February 6 to 13, 2018 among 1002 people, representative of the French population aged 15 to 24 years.