Knowledge of Malaria and Utilization of Insecticide-Treated Nets amongst Mothers of Under-five Children in selected Rural Communities of Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory
Background: Malaria is a life-threatening parasitic disease caused by the plasmodium parasite and women and under-five children are more prone to its adverse consequences. The use of insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) is recommended to reduce malaria burden in endemic communities. The study aimed to determine knowledge of malaria and utilization of insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) amongst mothers of under-five children in rural communities of Nigeria’s Federal Capital Territory, and the predictors.
Methods: A community-based cross-sectional design was used. Multi-stage sampling method was used to select 160 mothers of under-five children in two rural communities. A structured questionnaire was used for data collection. Data analysis was done using SPSS statistical software version 22.0 and level of statistical significance was determined by a p value of < 0.05.
Results: Mean age of respondents was 29.0±5.4 years, and majority 144 (90%) of the women were married. Lower proportion of respondents had good knowledge of malaria 33 (20.6%). Ninety-four (58.8%) of respondents owned ITNs, but less than half 45 (47.9%) utilized the nets. Predictors of good knowledge of malaria were having attained tertiary education [Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR); 2.7, 95% Confidence Interval (CI):1.1–8.1], p=0.042, and being self-employed, (AOR; 3.4, 95% CI: 1.1-13.1), p=0.043). Predictor of utilization of ITNs was being aged 30 years and above (AOR; 2.5, 95% CI: 1.1-6.1, p=0.031).
Conclusion: Lower proportions of respondents had good knowledge of malaria and utilization of ITNs. Health education of mothers on malaria and benefits of ITNs use should be intensified in the study area.