Household management of diarrhoeal diseases and associated factors among children in internally displaced peoples camps-Lira District.
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Introduction: Diarrhoea occurs worldwide and causes 4% of deaths. It causes high mortality and morbidity especially in displaced populations. Uganda has about 1.8million people displaced due to civil conflict mainly in the north and eastern districts. There is no information on household management of diarrhoea and associated factors in camps for the internally displaced. Objective: To describe the household management of diarrhoeal diseases and associated factors in internally displaced peoples' camps in Lira District, northern Uganda. Study design: This was a cross sectional study. Study setting: The study was carried out in the rural internally displaced peoples' camps in Lira district. Study population: Caretakers of 460 children aged 3 months to 59 months were consecutively enrolled from the camps during the study period. They should have lived in the camp for a period of a month or more. Methods: Caretakers of children who fulfilled the selection criteria were enrolled and interviewed on various aspects of hygiene, sanitation and household management of diarrhoea. Six focus groups of caretakers were conducted. The data was entered using EPI-INFO and analyzed with SPSS, STATA and EPI-INFO computer packages. Results: Of the 460 children, 355(77.2%) had diarrhoea. One hundred children (21.7%) had blood in the stool. Diarrhoea was associated with a short duration of stay of less than a year in the camp@=0.003 OR 2.02 CI 1.27-3.21), age of the caretaker less than 20 years (p=0.036 OR 0.57 CI 0.34-1 .OO), duration of exclusive breast feeding c1/12 (p=000 OR 2.18 CI 1.4-3-39), cough (p=0.01 OR 1.8 CI 1.15-2-86), fever (p=0.01 OR 2.30 CI 1.2 4.41) measles(p=0.022 OR 3.21 CI 1.12-9.18 ), unprotected water source (p=0.002 OR 2.02 CI 1.25-3.26), latrine use (p=0.011 OR 2.4 CI 1.2-4.8) and littered garbage(p=0.013 OR 1.87 CI 1.14-3 .O). In the management of diarrhoea, home available fluids (37%) were the preferred mode of treatment, followed by ORS. Most caretakers withheld feeds and fathers were the decision makers. Information on household management was obtained from the community owned resource people (CORPS). Conclusions: Diarrhoea is still a major health problem in the IDPs camps. Poor water and sanitation, presence of a fever and exclusive breastfeeding for less than 6 months are associated with diarrhoea. Home available fluids are the main form of treatment, however feeds are largely with held. The main source of information on diarrhoea treatment is the COW. Recommendation: Lira district should improve on the water and sanitation in the IDPs camps through provision of adequate number of clean water sources. Exclusive breast feeding for six months should be emphasized.