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Factors influencing health care workers’ implementation of tuberculosis contact tracing in Kweneng, Botswana

Lebapotswe Tlale
Rosemary Frasso
Onalenna Kgosiesele
Mpho Selemogo
Quirk Mothei
Dereje Habte
Andrew Steenhoff


Introduction: TB contact tracing rates remain low in high burden settings and reasons for this are not well known. We describe factors that influence health care workers' (HCW) implementation of TB contact tracing (CT) in a high TB burden district of Botswana. Methods: data were collected using questionnaires and in-depth interviews in 31 of the 52 health facilities in Kweneng East Health District. Responses were summarized using summary statistics and comparisons between HCW groups were done using parametric or non-parametric tests as per normality of the data distribution. Results: one hundred and four HCWs completed questionnaires. Factors that influenced HCW TB contact tracing were their knowledge, attitudes and practices as well as personal factors including decreased motivation and lack of commitment. Patient factors included living further away from the clinic, unknown residential address and high rates of migration and mobility. Administrative factors included staff shortages, lack of transport, poor reporting of TB cases and poor medical infrastructure e.g. suboptimal laboratory services. A national HCW strike and a restructuring of the health system emerged as additional factors during in-depth interviews of TB coordinators. Conclusion: multiple factors lead to poor TB contact tracing in this district. Interventions to increase TB contact tracing will be informed by these findings.

The Pan African Medical Journal 2016;24

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eISSN: 1937-8688