International Journal of Global Health

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Knowledge and Attitudes towards Solid Organ Donation Among Healthcare Workers, Medical Students, and Public in Sub-Saharan Africa: a Systematic Review

Background: African countries are facing several multifaceted obstacles in tissue and organ donations and transplantations. Some of the challenges include a lack of public education, awareness, and motivation for organ donation and transplantation programs. The purpose of this article is to assess knowledge and attitude towards solid organ donation among healthcare workers, medical students, and the public in sub-Saharan Africa.

Methods: A systematic literature search was conducted through PubMed, Psyc INFO, and Google scholar databases which were searched using controlled and free-text language. As this is the first work for the region, we included studies published between 2004 and 2020. The relevant data of the selected studies were extracted and categorized based on their target populations, and findings on the knowledge and attitude were summarized and described.

Results: Of the 241 retrieved studies, twenty-two fulfilled the pre-defined criteria included in the review. The knowledge and attitude toward solid organ donation were varying among healthcare workers, medical students, and the public. Accordingly, healthcare workers had adequate knowledge with a positive attitude; medical students had moderate or good knowledge with a poor attitude; the public had a poor knowledge with a relatively positive attitude toward organ donation.

Conclusions: A comprehensive medical education along with adequate information is required to improve the attitude toward the organ donation program in sub-Saharan Africa. Yet again, enhanced knowledge about cultural and attitudinal obstacles against organ donation should be addressed to improve the knowledge and attitude toward the program in the region.

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