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Research: Community perception of malaria and its influence on health-seeking behaviour in rural Ghana: a descriptive study

January 8, 2013 - 10:02 -- Bart G.J. Knols
Average: 
Author(s): 
Alexander Suuk Laar, Amos Kankponang Laar, Philip Ayizem Dalinjong
Reference: 
MWJ 2013, 4, 1
Article type: 
Research
Abstract: 

This article is the outcome of a descriptive cross-sectional study that assessed local perceptions on malaria and health seeking behaviour among inhabitants in the Kassena-Nankana district in the Upper East Region of Ghana. A total of 120 respondents were included in the study through a systematic random sampling procedure of households. The majority (65%) of respondents had awareness about malaria and linked it to mosquito bites. They had knowledge about malaria through health workers including health professionals from the Navrongo Health Research Centre (NHRC) (83.3%), radio (7.3%), television (5.8%), friends (1.7%) or newspapers (0.8%). The results also showed that people incorporated traditional and modern elements into their concept of the disease and treatment strategies. Perceptions and health-seeking behaviour are critical to the success and sustainability of malaria management and control. Understanding local concepts of illness and their influence on health care-seeking behaviour can complement existing knowledge to help develop more effective malaria control interventions in these communities.

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