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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2015

Home-based malaria management in children by women: Evidence from a malaria endemic community in sub-Saharan Africa

Eugene-Ezebilo, Doreen N.; Ezebilo, Eugene Ejike

Abstract

Objective

To examine the medicines and dosage that mothers who engage in home-based malaria management administer to children aged ≤ 5 years having signs and symptoms associated with malaria and to discuss the possibilities of designing an effective home-based malaria management strategy.

Methods

The data were obtained from face-to-face semi-structured interviews conducted with mothers in the Ugbowo Community of Benin City, Nigeria who were selected using multi-stage systematic random sampling technique. The data were analyzed by qualitative content analysis, arithmetic mean, simple percentages and bar chart.

Results

Approximately 90% of the interviewees engaged in home-based malaria management and 10% patronized the hospital. Most of the interviewees who engaged in home-based malaria management administered medicines that stimulates the production of red blood cells and supplies vitamins to children having signs and symptoms of malaria, followed by painkillers and anti-malaria and cough medicine was the least. Of the anti-malaria medicines administered to children, almost 80% of the interviewees administered chloroquine to children, 15% quinine and 3% halfan. Approximately 60% of the interviewees had the correct knowledge of the dosage regime for chloroquine, 38% for quinine and 9% for halfan.

Conclusions

Although home-based malaria management is important, it cannot serve as a substitute to the hospital. Some diseases have signs and symptoms that are similar to that of malaria which implies that administering anti-malaria medicines to a child without confirmatory tests might lead to irredeemable complications in that child. If the strategy is to make home-based malaria management effective and sustainable mothers, community health officials should be involved in designing the strategy. Simple rapid diagnostic test kits for malaria should be made available to community health officials and pharmacists so that confirmatory tests could be carried out before dispensing medicines.

Keywords

Anti-malaria medicines; indigenous knowledge; malaria management; mothers; paediatrics

Published in

Asian Pacific Journal of Tropical Disease
2015, volume: 5, number: 7, pages: 532-538

Authors' information

Eugene-Ezebilo, Doreen N.
University of Benin
Ezebilo, Eugene Ejike
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Southern Swedish Forest Research Centre

Sustainable Development Goals

SDG3 Good health and wellbeing

UKÄ Subject classification

Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
Health Care Service and Management, Health Policy and Services and Health Economy

Publication Identifiers

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/S2222-1808(15)60831-3

URI (permanent link to this page)

https://res.slu.se/id/publ/71511