Patient-perceived factors contributing to low tuberculosis cure rate at Greater Giyani healthcare facilities
AbstractBackground: Compliance with tuberculosis (TB) treatment is unpredictable. Most patients do not comply because they do not see the importance of doing so, which is usually influenced by lack of knowledge.
Objectives: The purpose of the study was to explore and describe the factors contributing to low TB cure rates in Greater Giyani Municipality, as viewed by patients.
Method: The study was conducted in the Greater Giyani Municipality in Limpopo Province which had a TB cure rate ranging from 14% to 94%. The research design in this study was qualitative, exploratory, descriptive and contextual in nature. The population consisted of all TB patients diagnosed and referred for treatment and care in Primary Health Care (PHC) facilities. Non-probability purposive sampling was used to select TB patients and health facilities which had a cure rate lower than the national target of 85%. One patient was sampled from each PHC facility. An in-depth face-to-face interview was used to collect data using an interview guide.
Results: The findings showed that most of the TB patients come from poor families, which makes it difficult for them to obtain financial and food security. The health facilities often run out of food supplements and TB medicine. Cultural beliefs about TB also lead to TB patients seeking assistance from traditional health practitioners and faith-based healers.
Conclusion: There is a need to have a policy regarding how discharged tuberculosis patients on treatment are supervised when at home. Healthcare facilities should also ensure that there is enough medication for these patients as lack of medication can lead them to default.
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