JOURNAL ARTICLE

Community-based study on knowledge, attitudes and perception of rabies in Gelephu, south-central Bhutan

Tenzin, Navneet K Dhand, Bir Doj Rai, Changlo, Sangay Tenzin, Karma Tsheten, Pema Ugyen, Karma Singye, Michael P Ward
International Health 2012, 4 (3): 210-9
24029402
Community knowledge, attitudes and practices are important both for prevention of human deaths due to rabies and for control of the disease in animals. This study was a cross-sectional survey investigating the level of community knowledge as well as attitudes and perceptions about rabies in Gelephu, south-central Bhutan, a region endemic for rabies. A total of 615 household respondents were interviewed, of which 224 (36%) were male and 391 (64%) were female. The majority of respondents had a high level of knowledge, attitudes and perception of rabies and had a positive attitude towards the prevention and control of rabies. Multivariate logistic regression modelling showed that better knowledge of rabies was predicted by gender, educational level and dog ownership status of respondents, whilst health-seeking behaviour of animal bite injuries was predicted by dog ownership status, presence of children in the household and occupation of the respondents. The majority of respondents believed that stray dogs are a problem in the community and felt that it was important to control the dog population in Gelephu. These findings also indicate that there exists a knowledge gap about rabies in the community that could be improved by creating an awareness education programme.

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