People’s perceptions of malaria and factors affecting effective use of ITNS: the case of TNVS in Tandahimba

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University of Dar es Salaam.
Tanzania National Voucher Scheme is implementing ITNs to reduce maternal and infant mortality in Tanzania. The study examined social and cultural aspects, paying particular attention to people’s perception of malaria and factors affecting effective use of ITNs. The main aim was to investigate why there is a low use of ITN in malaria prevention. The overall study was both qualitative and quantitative based on a survey method. Over all 36.73-44.8% of the respondents had heard of the voucher scheme. Awareness was highest among currently pregnant women. 27.59%,and 29.05% of current pregnant women and children under five years of age respectively sleep under the mosquito nets. Factors found to be affecting the use of ITNs were found to be affordability and Socioeconomic Status, seasonality, Malaria-Mosquito link, and perception. Also findings show that people have integrated ideas derived from biomedical knowledge into their interpretation of malaria. Villagers commonly use the term maleria to refer to mild and easily cured type of fever, which they see as caused by mosquitoes. Swahili terms such as degedege (convulsions), and homa kali (high fever), on the other hand, are used for conditions commonly feared as life threatening, especially for small children, and - from biomedical perspective-related to the complicated forms of clinical malaria. This study demonstrates that a dynamic view of malaria related knowledge and practice opens innovative lines of inquiry, which may contribute to enhancing the effectiveness of ITN interventions.
Available in printed form, East Africana Collection, Dr. Wilbert Chagula Library, Class mark (THS EAF RA644M2M9)
Malaria, Pulic health, Tandahimba
Mtawa, E, E (2007) People’s perceptions of malaria and factors affecting effective use of ITNS: the case of TNVS in Tandahimba. Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Dar es Salaam.