THE EFFECT OF SHORT-TERM TRAINING ON KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDE AND PRACTICE OF PRIMARY HEALTH CARE WORKERS ON DIRECTLY OBSERVED TREATMENT FOR SHORT COURSE GUIDELINES FOR TUBERCULOSIS IN ABIA STATE, NIGERIA
Tuberculosis (TB) is a major public health problem. The Federal Ministry of Health has developed a national guideline for the treatment of TB. This guideline promotes DOTS as the standard treatment. Little efforts have been made to understand the use of this guideline. It is possible to train PHC workers working at TB centres to improve their knowledge and implementation of DOTS guideline. This study sought to assess the effect of short-term training on knowledge, attitude and practice of PHC workers on DOTS for TB in Abia state, Nigeria.
The design was a training intervention study among intervention and control groups. Out of the 17 LGAs, PHC workers in 10 LGAs were used for the study while those in the other 7 LGAs were used for the contol. A total sampling of all 183 PHC workers in TB units was undertaken: 103 in the intervention group and 80 in the control group.
The training intervention led to a statistically significant increase in the knowledge of the study group on different terms used in the treatment and relapse, DOTS elements, different phases of treatment and appropriate treatment. There was however no significant improvement in their knowledge of aetiology, transmission and diagnosis of TB. There was also a significant improvement in the practices of the study group. This improvement occurred in all the elements of DOTS guideline: from direct observation of drug intake, dosage information to diagnosis and contact tracing.
Periodic training and re-training of PHC workers to cover all the aspect of DOTS: identification, diagnosis, treatment and follow-up should be instituted.
TB DOTS strategy module should be introduced in the school of Health Technology since it is the major training school for PHC workers in Abia State
Periodic assessment of the attitude of health workers at PHC level should be encouraged.