Knowledge, attitudes, and practices about tuberculosis and choice of communication channels in a rural community in Vietnam

Nguyen Phuong Hoa, Nguyen Thi Kim Chuc, Anna Thorson
Health Policy 2009, 90 (1): 8-12

OBJECTIVES: To describe the TB knowledge in the general population and to analyze which methods and tools should be used for health education in community.

METHODS: A population-based cross-sectional survey was carried out within a demographic surveillance site in a rural district in Vietnam. A random sample of 12,143 adults was included.

RESULTS: The average knowledge score was 4.3+/-2.1 (maximum=8). Men had a significantly higher knowledge score than women (4.8 vs. 4.0). More than half of the respondents thought TB was hereditary. In a multivariate analysis, gender, occupation, economic status, education, and sources of information were significantly associated with level of TB knowledge. Commonly, reported sources of information included television (64.6%) and friends/relatives (42.7%). Sources of information differed between men and women. Commonly, television and loudspeakers were suggested as good ways of supplying information (70.4% and 55.1%).

CONCLUSIONS: A large proportion of general population had limited knowledge of TB, especially among women. Traditional beliefs such as a hereditary cause of TB persists in the population, despite many years of health education on TB. Access to information should be taken into consideration when choosing methods and channels for health education programmes.

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