The One Health approach to identify knowledge, attitudes and practices that affect community involvement in the control of Rift Valley fever outbreaks

Hassan, O A and Affognon, H D and Rocklov, J and Mburu, P and Sang, R and Ahlm, C and Evander, M (2017) The One Health approach to identify knowledge, attitudes and practices that affect community involvement in the control of Rift Valley fever outbreaks. PLoS Neglected Tropical Diseases. pp. 1-12. ISSN 1935-2727

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Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a viral mosquito-borne disease with the potential for global expansion, causes hemorrhagic fever, and has a high case fatality rate in young animals and in humans. Using a cross-sectional community-based study design, we investigated the knowledge, attitudes and practices of people living in small village in Sudan with respect to RVF outbreaks. A special One Health questionnaire was developed to compile data from 235 heads of household concerning their knowledge, attitudes, and practices with regard to controlling RVF. Although the 2007 RVF outbreak in Sudan had negatively affected the participants’ food availability and livestock income, the participants did not fully understand how to identify RVF symptoms and risk factors for both humans and livestock. For example, the participants mistakenly believed that avoiding livestock that had suffered spontaneous abortions was the least important risk factor for RVF. Although the majority noticed an increase in mosquito population during the 2007 RVF outbreak, few used impregnated bed nets as preventive measures. The community was reluctant to notify the authorities about RVF suspicion in livestock, a sentinel for human RVF infection. Almost all the respondents stressed that they would not receive any compensation for their dead livestock if they notified the authorities. In addition, the participants believed that controlling RVF outbreaks was mainly the responsibility of human health authorities rather than veterinary authorities. The majority of the participants were aware that RVF could spread from one region to another within the country. Participants received most their information about RVF from social networks and the mass media, rather than the health system or veterinarians. Because the perceived role of the community in controlling RVF was fragmented, the probability of RVF spread increased.

Item Type: Article
Divisions: Research Program : West & Central Africa
Uncontrolled Keywords: Fever, Health, Local communities, Rift Valley fever, Sudan
Subjects: Others
Depositing User: Mr Ramesh K
Date Deposited: 30 Mar 2017 09:54
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2017 08:29
Official URL:
Acknowledgement: We are grateful to the Ministry of Health, Gezira State, Sudan for facilitating the study. We thank the community and the community leaders in the pilot and study areas for their kind collaboration. We are also grateful to the data collectors. We also thank Dr. Rania Salah Eldin Bashir Abass for kind help with Fig 1.
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