Tuberculosis risk factors in Lephalale local municipality of Limpopo province, South Africa
Lephalale local municipality is the leading sub-district in Limpopo province with 9.8% of deaths caused by tuberculosis. This study aimed to describe the risk factors for TB in Lephalale local municipality. A quantitative descriptive, cross-sectional survey design was used to target 148 registered TB patients aged 18 years and above in the sub-district’s 6 clinics. Approval and ethical clearance was obtained from the relevant authorities (SHS/15/PH/14/2006). Only respondents who agreed in writing to be part of the study were included. Ethical research principles were observed. A researcher-developed self-administered questionnaire was used to collect data. The data were analysed using the Statistical Package for Social Sciences® version 22.0. Of 148 respondents, a high proportion of diagnosed TB patients (43.24%) were receiving less than R1 000 per month; the majority (53.38%) were unemployed; 22% were overcrowded in a single room; 31.8% had skipped taking TB medication at some point; 12% had previously worked in the mining industries; 37.16% never opened windows: 39.19% were from a rural settlement. TB risk factors in Lephalale include overcrowding, inadequate ventilation, TB treatment interruption, rural settlement, working in a mine, and low income. Educating communities about improving ventilation and treatment adherence as well as community empowerment with entrepreneurial skills might assist.
Keywords: cultural, risk, socio-economic, tuberculosis