ASSESSMENT OF THE KNOWLEDGE AND ATTITUDE TOWARDS INSECTICIDE TREATED NETS (ITN) AMONG CAREGIVERS OF UNDER-FIVE CHILDREN IN A TERTIARY HOSPITAL IN JOS, PLATEAU STATE, NIGERIA
Idoko Lucy, Okafor Kingsley C.*, Amlabu Gift M., Idika, Chidindu N., Oguche, Blessing E.
Introduction: Key to malaria control is knowledge of and acceptance of use of insecticide treated net. Despite efforts by health authorities to promote the use of ITNs, studies have shown however, that there is still a wide gap between knowledge and utilization of these nets in the endemic areas of the world. Studies have shown that Insecticide Treated Nets awareness in Nigeria varies from State to State with as high as 93% in the Southern States and as low as 36% in the Northern States. 39% had a negative attitude towards ITNs Poor sensitization and wrong perception is responsible for poor attitude in certain areas. Community participation plays an essential role in the control of malaria and whether this succeeds or fails depends greatly on the behaviour of caregivers of young children. This study seeks assess the knowledge and attitude towards insecticide treated nets (ITN) among caregivers of under five children in a tertiary hospital in North Central, Nigeria. Methodology: The study is a descriptive cross sectional study conducted among 242 caregivers of under five children in Tertiary Hospital in Jos, Plateau State, Nigeria in 2018. A simple Random Sampling technique was used to select participants. Ethical clearance was obtained from the Ethical Review Committee of BHUTH, Jos. Findings: Majority (87.2%) of caregivers were within the age group 25 and 39 years, Majority of care givers had tertiary level of education 155 (64.0%), 235 (97.1%) were married, 124 (51.2%) of the caregivers had 2 under-five children in their household, 123 (50.8%) of the under fives were males while females were 119 (49.2%). Majority of the children 99 (40.9%) were aged between 1-3 months. Almost all 238 (98.3%) of the caregivers had heard of malaria before. Most 220 (68.3%) of the caregivers, agreed that mosquitoes cause malaria responded, majority of the respondents 230 (95%) believed that sleeping inside mosquito nets prevent malaria, 153 (43.6%) got their information on malaria from the health centre/hospital. Knowledge of ITN was 192 (79.3%) however 50 (20.2%) do not know about ITN. Knowledge was positively associated with higher level of education, lower ages of children, higher ages of caregivers and trading as an occupation of caregivers. Half of the caregivers were willing to recommend ITN to a friend/family, majority agreed to use ITNs and majority supported sleeping under mosquito net for everyone. Summarily, 60.3% had positive attitude towards ITN. Conclusion: Majority of caregivers knew about ITN. Factors affecting knowledge include higher level of education, lower ages of children, higher ages of caregivers and trading as an occupation of caregivers. Majority supported sleeping under mosquito net for everyone. Summarily, 60.3% had positive attitude towards ITN. There is need for increase in knowledge of Malaria via health education, increase in radio and television campaigns, talks and adverts. Strengthening of teaching about Malaria and other endemic diseases in school curriculum at primary, secondary and tertiary levels will help boost attitude toward ITN.
Keywords: Malaria, Insecticide treated net, Knowledge.
[Full Text Article]