Objectives: HIV incidence in Germany is increasing even though the German Federal Centre for Health Education reported that the entire German population (99 %) has sufficient knowledge of sexual HIV transmission. We tried to find out the reason for this discrepancy.
Methods: HIV transmission knowledge was investigated in a Munich population (n = 317) and the findings compared with a nationwide study.
Results: No differences in knowledge regarding needle sharing and HIV/AIDS curability were found but, in relation to sexual HIV transmission, only 55.5 % of Munich respondents had sufficient knowledge of vaginal, anal and oral transmission routes.
Conclusions: The knowledge level reported in the nationwide study is overestimated as a result of the ambiguous character of the questions used.