COVID-19 Health Knowledge and Practices among Nigerian Residents during the Second Wave of the Pandemic: A quick online cross-sectional survey
The COVID-19 pandemic has redefined life as a whole. The lack of knowledge about the safe practices needed to manage the spread of the global pandemic could be detrimental to public health. This dearth of knowledge and inappropriate practices could increase the spread of the coronavirus and lead to high mortality rates in a country like Nigeria where access to healthcare services is limited. The study’s objective was to assess the health knowledge and practices of Nigerian residents in the face of the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Materials and Methods:
The study adopted a cross-sectional online survey which was conducted from January 2 to February 1, 2021. A self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data on the socio-demographics characteristics of respondents, the knowledge of COVID-19 and health management practices related to the virus. The reliability of the instrument yielded 0.72 internal consistency and the data were analyzed using descriptive and logistic regression at p<0.05.
A total of 1,988 respondents participated in the study; 49.3% of this number were urban residents, 63.0% were males, 58.1% were married, and 67.4% had tertiary education. Overall, the mean score was 9.44±1.8 (72.6%) for knowledge and 6.72±3.1 (56%) for appropriate practices. Rural residence (OR = 0.552, 95% CI 0.351–0.868), female gender (OR = 4.494, 95% CI 3.264–6.187), aged 50 years and above (OR = 0.137, 95% CI 0.071-0.261), married status (OR = 5.004, 95% CI 3.242–7.724), tertiary education (OR = 7.049, 95% CI 4.362–11.391), Yoruba ethnicity (OR = 2.828, 95% CI 1.292–6.187), and good knowledge of COVID-19 (OR = 1.905, 95% CI 1.376–2.637) significantly predict appropriate practices.
A substantial number of our respondents had good knowledge but lacked appropriate practices towards COVID-19. The beliefs of the people influenced inappropriate practices just as adequate practice was associated with good knowledge. There is a need for adequate sensitization programmes which might require the use of local languages/dialects and Nigerian Pidgin English to reduce the misinformation surrounding the virus.
Keywords: COVID-19 Pandemic, Knowledge, Beliefs, Practices, Nigeria