Knowledge, Attitudes and Practise of Patients regarding Management of their Condition.
Murunyu, David L.
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Tuberculosis (TB) has always been a public concern in most developing countries. It is a disease of global importance. A third of the world’s population is estimated to have been infected with mycobacterium TB; 8 million new cases of TB emerge each year. The TB crisis is likely to escalate due to the HIV. Epidemic (W.H.O 1998). WHO declared TB a global emergency in 1993 and indeed it is now a leading infectious killer of adults in the productive age bracket. It is estimated that TB kills nine million people globally annually. Trends of notification of TB cases in Uganda from 1991-1996, indicated 19,016 cases in 1991, 20, 662 in 1992, 21648 in 1993, 23, 822 in 1994, 25, 248 in 1995 and 27122 in 1996. These figures show that the number of TB cases has been increasing country wide. This study, which aimed at assessing the knowledge attitude and practice of TB out-patients as regards management of their condition, was carried out in Mbale hospital. It addressed the following objectives; To determine patient’s knowledge as regards T.B management To find out beliefs and attitudes towards the management of T.B by TB patients at Mbale regional hospital. To assess the cultural and habitual practices of T.B patients regarding their condition. To find out problems experienced by health workers in the management of T.B patients. The study used a non probability- convenience sampling procedure which involved both qualitative and quantitative approaches. Data was collected using questionnaires written in English language and administered to the respondents by the researcher and two assistants who were enrolled nurses. The sample size was 61 TB out-patients, both males and females were involved in this study and the respondents were all above 14 years of age. Data was analyzed with the help of a statistician using EPIINFO computer package and presented in form of pie-charts, bar graphs, frequency tables and percentages. Findings included; Most of the respondents were from rural areas, were of low economic and educational status of whom the majority were not vaccinated against TB etc. In this study, the majority of the respondents believed that TB is spread through sharing utensils, air droplets ate. It was also shown that majority of TB patients report late for treatment due to ignorance about the disease, also most of the patients have never been health educated about TB. Basing on these findings, it is recommended that the Ministry of Health pays more attention to health education, for the community and the patients who should be made aware of their role in the control of TB. Government and the ministry of health should put more emphasis on TB vaccination, case finding, case holding and follow up.