Influence Of Definitions Of Malaria Illness On Health-Seeking Behavior In Homabay County, Kenya

ABSTRACT

Malaria poses a great challenge to countries in the world. In sub-Saharan Africa, malaria is among the leading causes of mortality and morbidity. This disease kills many people despite the interventions that have been put in place. This study explored the influence of definitions of malaria illness on health-seeking behavior in Homabay County, Kenya. The objectives of this study were to document the socio-demographic characteristics of residents of Homabay County, to establish the definitions of malaria illness held by the residents of Homabay County, to determine the health-seeking behavior adopted during malaria illness and to analyze the relationship between definitions of illness and health-seeking behavior for malaria. The study adopted the Symbolic Interaction Theory, Health Belief Model (HBM) and Suchman Stages of Illness and Medicare Model. The study employed a cross-sectional survey research design utilizing both qualitative and quantitative approaches in data collection. It utilized a sample size of (384) respondents from Suba South Constituency in Homabay County. Qualitative data was collected using key informant interviews and focus group discussions. Four key informant interviews and four focus group discussions together with the open-ended questions in the questionnaire provided qualitative data. Closed-ended questions in the questionnaire provided quantitative data which was analyzed descriptively using Statistical Package for Social Science (SPSS) version 21 and presented in form of tables and charts. Qualitative data, on the other hand, was transcribed and presented in themes as per the objective of the study. The study revealed that a majority of the respondents had the correct definition of malaria illness which they linked to mosquito bites however there were misconceptions surrounding the disease such as malaria being caused by staying long in water and drinking dirty water among others. The study also revealed that respondents used pain killers together with other drugs bought from chemists as their first point of action when they had symptoms of malaria. The use of health facilities in rectifying ill health was considered when over the counter drugs did not cure illness. This study also revealed a relationship between the definitions of malaria illness and health-seeking behavior through analysis of the number of respondents’ definitions of malaria illness and the action they took. Those who defined malaria to be caused by mosquitoes went to local shops or chemists and health facilities to seek treatment. This study, therefore, concluded that respondents had the correct etiology of malaria coupled with other definitions arising out of social experiences with the disease. The study recommended the need for sensitization of malaria through vernacular radio stations and the participation of community members during health talks to improve on knowledge, health-seeking behavior and demystify misconceptions. Through this, interventions geared towards mitigating malaria can be accepted and be more effective.

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APA

ODINGA, N (2021). Influence Of Definitions Of Malaria Illness On Health-Seeking Behavior In Homabay County, Kenya. Afribary. Retrieved from https://afribary.com/works/influence-of-definitions-of-malaria-illness-on-health-seeking-behavior-in-homabay-county-kenya

MLA 8th

ODINGA, NANCY "Influence Of Definitions Of Malaria Illness On Health-Seeking Behavior In Homabay County, Kenya" Afribary. Afribary, 01 Jun. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/influence-of-definitions-of-malaria-illness-on-health-seeking-behavior-in-homabay-county-kenya. Accessed 30 May. 2024.

MLA7

ODINGA, NANCY . "Influence Of Definitions Of Malaria Illness On Health-Seeking Behavior In Homabay County, Kenya". Afribary, Afribary, 01 Jun. 2021. Web. 30 May. 2024. < https://afribary.com/works/influence-of-definitions-of-malaria-illness-on-health-seeking-behavior-in-homabay-county-kenya >.

Chicago

ODINGA, NANCY . "Influence Of Definitions Of Malaria Illness On Health-Seeking Behavior In Homabay County, Kenya" Afribary (2021). Accessed May 30, 2024. https://afribary.com/works/influence-of-definitions-of-malaria-illness-on-health-seeking-behavior-in-homabay-county-kenya