Youth populations are likely to engage in high-risk sexual behaviour.
This population-based, cross-sectional study of young adults aged 17–21 years was conducted in the metropolitan city of Karachi, where the population consists of several ethnic groups from all areas of the country.
The sample size was calculated at a total of 1,650 with the assumption that 50 and 57 per cent of the males and females respectively would have insufficient knowledge of the modes of spread of HIV/AIDS , applying a 95 per cent confidence level, a power of 80 per cent and including an equal number of males and females.
HIVAIDS is spreading globally, hitting the younger generations.
In Pakistan, the prevalence of HIV in high-risk subpopulations is five per cent or higher.
This poses a serious threat of a generalised epidemic especially among the younger population.
In the wake of HIVAIDS epidemic this is worrying as a well informed younger generation is crucial in restricting the spread of this epidemic.This indicates a widening window during which young people are likely to engage in risky sexual behaviour.The estimated population of adolescents (10–19 years of age) in Pakistan is over 30 million, which is approximately 23 per cent of the total population .Still, youth populations are poorly informed in Pakistan due to limited access to information about sexual and reproductive health matters, as both parents and the school system are reluctant to fulfil this obligation due to the sensitivity of the subject , but relying on such sources of information for the nation's younger generations is not advisable.Considering this, and the fact that the HIV/AIDS epidemic is on the increase in Pakistan makes it extremely important to assess young people's knowledge and perceptions of sexual and reproductive health matters and of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in particular to identify knowledge gaps for further preventive activities.Of 1,650 subjects, 24 per cent (n = 390) reported that they had not heard of HIV/AIDS.