Knowledge and Utilization of Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT) among Mothers in Enugu, Nigeria: A Health Facility Survey
AbstractObjectives A health-facility survey was done to determine the knowledge and utilization of oral rehydration therapy (ORT) among 400 mothers resident in Enugu.
Methods A systematic sample from a list of mothers attending the immunization clinic of the Institute of Child Health (ICH) of the University of Nigeria Teaching Hospital, Enugu was interviewed using a pre-tested structured questionnaire.
Results A pre-survey awareness of ORT was noted among 97.5% of the mothers. The beneficial effects of ORT were seen by 57.3% of the mothers as replenishment of lost energy and 37.5% as fluid and salt replacement. Although 77.0% of the respondents could not describe correctly the preparation of salt-sugar solution (SSS)/oral rehydration salt solution (ORS), a high ORT utilization rate of 74.6% was recorded. ORT as a modality of managing childhood diarrhoea remained totally acceptable to 89.5% of the mothers.
Conclusion Many Mothers, although they accept and use ORT/SSS, could not accurately describe the methods of preparation of ORS/SSS. It is recommended that maternal perception of the role of ORT should be utilized by health personnel to promote its use, while routine training of caregivers on the preparation of SSS/ORS should be intensified during health education sessions.
Key Words: Knowledge of ORT, utilization of ORT, mothers, routine training.
Orient Journal of Medicine Vol.15(1&2) 2003: 45-48