While there is now evidence that health-promoting education can be effective at reducing transmission of human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection, little is known of the role of the practicing physician in this process. We have surveyed 301 practicing physicians in Northeastern Ohio over a 2-year period and we have assessed their attitudes, beliefs, and practices regarding preventive education with particular reference to HIV. We have found that while the majority of physicians believe strongly that HIV prevention is important and that physicians should play a prominent role in education, the incorporation of such measures in their practice lags far behind other areas of health prevention. Positive educational behavior was correlated with direct experience with HIV-infected patients and postgraduate education on HIV infection.
(Arch Intern Med. 1991;151:1157-1160)