A community survey on the knowledge of neglected tropical diseases in Cameroon

  • HLF Kamga
  • NJC Assob
  • DS Nsagha
  • AL Njunda
  • DL Njimoh
Keywords: Neglected Tropical Diseases, Cameroon, community, knowledge


Background: The neglected tropical diseases are a group of 13 infections that affect more than one billion people worldwide, especially those who live in extreme poverty. Aim: This study was conducted to determine community knowledge of these neglected tropical diseases (NTD) in Cameroon. Materials and Methods: A random sampling method was used to administer questionnaires to 3345 adults. Results: 2566 (76.7%) of people approached responded to the questionnaire. This comprised 1313 (51.2%) females and 1253 (48.8%) males. There was a significant level of association between the opinion of the respondents and their region of residence (P<0.05). Globally the percentage of persons with good knowledge of one of the neglected tropical diseases was low (ranging from 23.1% to 80.9%). Diseases for which the population had the highest percentages of knowledge were leprosy (80.9%), soil-transmitted helminth infections (75.3%), lymphatic filariosis (70.3%), onchocerciasis (66.2%) and human African trypanosomiasis (57.8%). Diseases for which people had the least percentages of knowledge were leishmaniosis (18.0%), dracunculiasis (23.1%), buruli ulcer (23.8%), trachoma (38.2%), endemic treponematosis (41.5%) and schistosomiasis (49.1%). Populations living in urban areas had a greater knowledge of the neglected tropical diseases than those living in rural and peri-urban areas (P<0.05) and males exhibited a greater knowledge than females (P<0.05). Conclusion: There was low community knowledge pattern of neglected tropical diseases, mostly among the female populations and people living in rural areas. We advocate mass media health education to be adopted as one of the strategies for the national control policy of NTDs. Keywords: Neglected Tropical Diseases, Cameroon, community, knowledge

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eISSN: 2315-5019
print ISSN: 2277-0941