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Rural Farm Households’ Level of Awareness of Insecticide-Treated Nets (ITNs) for Malaria Prevention amidst COVID-19 Pandemic in Akwa Ibom State, Nigeria

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JAFE Vol.  9(1): 38-51, 2022

Veronica S. Nkanta, Emem B. Inyang and Sunday B. Akpan

ABSTRACT

Despite the tremendous effort injected by the government of Akwa Ibom State to combat malaria prevalence through the use of insecticide-treated net (ITNs), it is obvious that the State has not yet achieved universal coverage of the endemic population. Premised on this fact, the study examined the rural farm household’s awareness of ITNs and identify factors that influence it. The cross-sectional data were collected from one hundred and eighty rural farm household heads. The Likert scale, descriptive tools and Logit model were used to analyze the data. The result revealed that 95.00% of rural farm households are aware of the existence and the use of ITNs in the State. Also, 79.44% and 15.56% of the farm households are extremely and slightly aware of ITNs respectively. Besides, the study identified radio and health extension agents as the most preferred sources of information on ITNs for the rural farm households in the State. The empirical results showed that the rural households’ age, farming experience, membership in social organization, education, family size, dependent ratio, non-farm income, farm income, ITNs information sources, cost of malaria treatment, hours of electricity, and nature of the building are significant factors influencing rural farm households’ awareness of ITNs. To enhance ITNs awareness and achieve the universal coverage of the rural areas of the State, the study recommends improvement in rural/adult education, expanding radio signals to rural areas, and increasing the formation of farmers’ groups.

Keywords:

malaria, ITNs, farmers, socioeconomics, rural, Akwa Ibom State

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