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Ragging: Awareness and perception among undergraduate medical students: A cross-sectional study

Sreedevi Arepalli, Aruna Marati Savanthe, Hari Prasad, Kalyan Chakravarthy, Pooja Bhavani.


Background: Ragging has become a menace, cause of fear, and shock not only for a fresher but to his/her parents too who are sending the loved ones for pursuing higher education by investing a lot of hard-earned money.

Objective: The objective of this study was to know the ragging experiences, perceptions of the medical students regarding ragging, and to make them aware of the laws for their protection.

Materials and Methods: This study was an institution-based, cross-sectional, qualitative study conducted on the third semester MBBS students of Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, between January and February, 2016. Out of 201 students, 150 students gave informed consent and participated in the study. A semi-structured questionnaire was prepared for pre- and post-tests. Educational intervention to create awareness on ill-effects and laws against ragging in sessions was conducted. Statistical analysis was done using SPSS 20 statistical software; Excel and appropriate statistics were used.

Results: Majority of the students (54%) were been ragged. Nearly 99% of the students encouraged positive interaction and 92% felt that ragging is done to communicate and familiarize, and majority (65.3%) of the students said that ragging has helped them to face hurdles in their life. Almost 92% of the students changed their view about ragging after our educational intervention. A significant improvement in the knowledge was seen regarding ragging, its effects, acts of ragging, and ragging as a punishable offence after educational intervention. Almost 86.67% said that actively functioning anti-ragging committee or squad or patrol can reduce the burden of ragging in the campus.

Conclusion: Overall awareness about ragging is poor. Provision of prior support for students may help reduce anxiety among newcomers. There is a need to develop awareness among these students about the various aspects of ragging and legal action against it. Only prior education and sensitization of students of hazards of ragging can curb this menace of ragging.

Key words: Ragging; Perceptions; Awareness; Undergraduate; Medical; Students

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