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Research Paper | Medicine | Saudi Arabia | Volume 10 Issue 6, June 2021
Knowledge and Attitude about Autism among Primary Health Care Physicians in Dammam and Alkhobar Cities, KSA in the Year 2019
Hussain Aldajani | Maha S. Eltwansy 
Abstract: Background: Autism is a lifelong condition, but early recognition, diagnosis, and treatment can improve the prognosis. Aims: To study the knowledge and attitude of primary health care physicians about autism spectrum disorder in Dammam and Al-khobar cities in Saudi Arabia. Methods: A cross-sectional study was done on 176 physicians working in PHCCs of MOH from Jan. 2020 till Jan. 2021.Data was collected from physicians through an electronic self-administered questionnaire. The questionnaire consists of 3 parts; demographic data, knowledge and attitude. Knowledge about childhood autism among health workers (KCAHW) questionnaire was used to assess knowledge of physicians. Results: A total of 176 physicians were included in this study, of them 50.6% were males and 49.4% were females. Less than half of the physicians (46%) were 31-40 years old. Generally, the majority of the respondents (69.9%) had a good level of knowledge about autism, while 30.1% had a poor level of knowledge. The score of knowledge ranged from 3 to 18 with median equals to 13 and 4 Interquartile Range. Gender, age, academic qualification, duration of clinical experience, familial or clinical dealing with autistic patients were significantly associated with knowledge about autism. Only gender and age were significantly associated with attitudes towards autism management. Conclusion: Although the majority of the physicians, about two thirds, had a good level of knowledge, this level is considered inadequate for early identification of autism at primary healthcare setting. Thus, there is a room of improvement to ensure proper care for autistic patients.
Keywords: PHCC, Primary Health Care Center, FM, Family Medicine, GP, General Practitioner, MOH, Ministry of Health
Edition: Volume 10 Issue 6, June 2021,
Pages: 1436 - 1445