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Hygienic habits and morbidity risk of children aged 6-23 months in kumbungu District, Ghana

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Document pages: 13 pages

Abstract: Health and sanitation practices from poor backgrounds are characterized by manifestations of diseases and infections, especially diarrhoea and respiratory infections in children. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effect of washing on the incidence of diarrhea and reproductive tract infection in children aged 6-23 months. method. An analytical cross-sectional study design was conducted in June 2017. Using the systematic random sampling technique, 300 mothers caregivers with children aged 6-23 months were selected from 9 communities in kumbungu district. We used a semi-structured questionnaire to evaluate children s cleaning behavior, family sociodemographic characteristics, and the incidence of diarrhea and reproductive tract infection. Health improvement framework observation guide was adapted for household sanitation. Backward binary multiple logistic regression was used to determine the WASH practices that significantly predicted morbidity. Results. About 53 and 55.3 of the children reportedly experienced diarrhoea and RTIs, respectively, two weeks before the survey. Caregiver handwashing with soap after defecation [OR = 0.32 (95 C.I: 0.19, 0.52)] and before feeding [OR = 0.50 (95 C.I: 0.30, 0.84)] as well as washing the child’s hands with or without soap before feeding [OR = 0.21 (95 C.I: 0.04, 1.01)] were associated with lower odds of diarrhoea morbidity. The main determinants of RTI morbidity included caregiver handwashing with or without soap after defecation [OR = 0.29 (95 C.I: 0.10, 0.81)] and washing of the child’s hands with soap before feeding [OR = 0.60 (95 C.I: 0.37, 0.99)] However, we found no association between household sanitation and diarrhoea as well as RTI among the children. Conclusion. About a half each of the children had diarrhoea and RTI 2 weeks before the survey. The results emphasise the need for urgent targeting of handwashing and waste disposal programmes to avert the high burden of diarrhoea and RTIs among children.

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