Academic Psychiatry

, Volume 32, Issue 2, pp 154–159

Attitudes Toward Psychiatry: A Survey of Medical Students at the University of Nairobi, Kenya

  • David M. Ndetei
  • Lincoln Khasakhala
  • Francisca Ongecha-Owuor
  • Mary Kuria
  • Victoria Mutiso
  • Judy Syanda
  • Donald Kokonya
International Column

DOI: 10.1176/appi.ap.32.2.154

Cite this article as:
Ndetei, D.M., Khasakhala, L., Ongecha-Owuor, F. et al. Acad Psychiatry (2008) 32: 154. doi:10.1176/appi.ap.32.2.154

Abstract

Objectives

The authors aim to determine the attitudes of University of Nairobi, Kenya, medical students toward psychiatry.

Methods

The study design was cross-sectional. Self-administered sociodemographic and the Attitudes Toward Psychiatry-30 items (ATP-30) questionnaires were distributed sequentially to every third medical student in his or her lecture theater before or immediately after the lectures. Analysis was done using SPSS version 11.5 and the results are presented in tables.

Results

Nearly 75% of the students had overall favorable attitudes toward psychiatry but only 14.3% considered psychiatry as a potential career choice. Sixty-six percent reported that they would not choose psychiatry as a career while the remaining 19.7% were not decided.

Conclusions

There is dissonance between positive attitudes toward psychiatry and the choice of psychiatry as a potential career. Therefore, there is a need to bridge the gap by addressing the various factors that potentially account for this dissonance.

Copyright information

© Academic Psychiatry 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • David M. Ndetei
    • 1
    • 2
  • Lincoln Khasakhala
    • 2
    • 3
  • Francisca Ongecha-Owuor
    • 2
    • 4
  • Mary Kuria
    • 1
    • 2
  • Victoria Mutiso
    • 2
  • Judy Syanda
    • 2
  • Donald Kokonya
    • 2
  1. 1.University of NairobiNairobiKenya
  2. 2.Africa Mental Health Foundation (AMHF)NairobiKenya
  3. 3.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of NairobiNairobiKenya
  4. 4.Coast Provincial General HospitalNairobiKenya

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