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Gulay Yilmazel 1 Article
Teachers’ Negative Attitudes and Limited Health Literacy Levels as Risks for Low Awareness of Epilepsy in Turkey
Gulay Yilmazel
J Prev Med Public Health. 2023;56(6):573-582.   Published online November 13, 2023
DOI: https://doi.org/10.3961/jpmph.23.330
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AbstractAbstract AbstractSummary PDFSupplementary Material
Objectives
For students with epilepsy, schools are a critical environment for managing the disease properly. This study examined awareness of epilepsy, attitudes toward epilepsy, and health literacy among school teachers in Turkey.
Methods
This study was conducted in a city in Turkey with 1408 public school teachers from June 2021 to September 2021.
Results
The median scores of the scales were 5, 29, and 32 for epilepsy awareness, epilepsy attitudes, and health literacy, respectively. Epilepsy awareness was higher in women, and epilepsy attitudes were more positive in women than men (p<0.05). While epilepsy awareness was higher in primary school teachers, epilepsy attitudes were more positive in secondary school teachers (p<0.05). Epilepsy awareness was lower in secondary school teachers (odds ratio [OR], 1.27; p<0.05), those who did not have an individual with epilepsy in their family/social environment (OR, 1.57; p<0.001), those who did not have a student with epilepsy in their class (OR, 1.45; p<0.05), and in those who had not witnessed an epilepsy seizure (OR,1.19; p<0.05). Compared to those with positive attitudes regarding epilepsy, epilepsy awareness was 1.36 times lower in those with negative attitudes (p<0.001). Epilepsy awareness was 1.92 times lower in those with limited health literacy than those with adequate health literacy (p<0.001).
Conclusions
In this study, low epilepsy awareness, negative epilepsy attitudes, and limited health literacy were common among teachers. The findings from this study suggest that panels, workshops, and health training on epilepsy should be organized for school teachers and included at regular intervals in certified first-aid practices.
Summary
Key Message
• This article examined school teachers' barriers to epilepsy awareness. • Awareness was low, negative attitudes were high, and health literacy level was limited. • Negative attitudes and limited health literacy were the most effective risks for poor awareness.

JPMPH : Journal of Preventive Medicine and Public Health