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Abstract

COUNSELING AND EDUCATIONAL INFORMATION RECEIVED BY PATIENTS PLACED ON ARTEMISININ COMBINATION THERAPY FOR MALARIA FEVER TREATMENT AND THE INFLUENCE OF SUB-OPTIMAL INFORMATION ON PATIENTS PERCEPTION

John David OHIEKU* and Emmanuel Elisha WIRBUIN

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Patients counseling and education is an important tool that motivate patient’s medication adherence while the understanding of adherence problems or perceptions about ACT and the level of information or its understanding thereof received by patients is key to formulating appropriate strategies toward optimizing ACT pharmacotherapy. Objective: The objectives of the study were to assess the counseling and educational information obtained by patients on ACT used in malaria treatment, and to assess patients’ specific factors that may affect medication rates and compliances. Results: Malaria illness affects all age strata but a very high proportion (80%) of cases occurred in those who are between the age bands of 10-30 years. The proportion of female patients in the study 207(51.8%) is slightly higher than the male patients 193(48.2%). Many patients 127 (31.2%) witnessed multiple malaria fever episodes in the last one year while 273(68.8%) patients had one case each during the same period. Among the repeated episode group, 48(37.8%) previously used non ACT agents. Only 79(19.8%) were advised to take lumefantrine containing ACT with fatty meal in order to enhance good outcome while about 215(53.8%) were counseled to complete their medication even when they feel well half-way into their medications use. Only 86 (21.5%) were told to repeat another dose if vomiting occurred within 30 minutes of ACT oral use. As high as 345(86.2%) do not know that ACT is not meant for preventive therapy. In evaluating patients compliant regarding ACT use, 249(62.2%) indicated that they feel better before completing ACT therapy and may sometimes abandon subsequent dose(s). About 165(41.2%) do not like the side effects of ACT while 75(18.3%) feel that the duration of ACT is too long. High costs of ACT were the issues raised by 155(38.8%) patients and 116(29.0%) further indicated having compliance problems with ACT therapy. Conclusion: A high proportion of patients do not receive enough drug counseling and educational information on ACT medication, which may have reflected for the various inappropriate perceptions toward ACT and malaria fever management.

Keywords: Artemisinin Combination Therapy, Malaria fever, patients’ perceptions.


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