Public awareness and attitude about Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever during an outbreak, Windhoek, Namibia, 2017
Kanutus Benedictus Shiikufeni1, Kofi Nyarko1,&
1Namibia Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, Windhoek, Namibia
Kofi Nyarko, Namibia Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Program, Windhoek, Namibia
Crimean-Congo haemoragic fever is a widespread viral disease caused by a Nairovirus of the Bunyaviridae family. The virus is transmitted to human through tick bites by an infected tick or through contacts with infected animals tissue or fluids. Human to human transmission is possible through contacts with bodily fluids. The virus causes severe haemorrhagic fever with a case fatality rate of up to 40%. There was an outbreak of CCHF in Omaheke region of Namibia in March 2017. This provoked public concern due to the deadly nature of the virus; we thus needed to access the public awareness in Windhoek the capital of Namibia.
we did a descriptive, cross-sectional study during our investigation. We interviewed 395 randomly selected subjects at five shopping malls in Windhoek.
out of the 395 respondents, 229(58%) of the subjects did not know that there
is CCHF in Namibia. Young people were better informed 184 (47%), as the level
of awareness increased along the age group, until the age of 60 years 10(3%).
People with secondary 110/197 (50 %) and tertiary level 97/148 (37%) of
education were more aware of the outbreak. The media was the main source
169 (73%) and through family and friends 31 (13%). There was no difference
in the level of awareness between sexes, males 120/204 (59%) and females
111/191 (58%). With only 137 (59.31%) subjects knowing the disease is transmitted
ticks 12 (5%), that CCHF is transmitted through infected animal carcasses
and 82 (35.5%) do not know what causes CCHF, knowledge is inadequate.
the people were not prepared for possible CCHF outbreak. Despite the widely publicized outbreak up to 58% of the subjects did not know that there is a CCHF outbreak in Namibia. There was poor understanding about the mode of transmission and preventive measures of the disease. We recommend a review of the mode of delivery and content of health education message during this outbreak, to inform them on future outbreak communication.
1st Ghana Field Epidemiology and Laboratory Training Programme Scientific conference (Accra)
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