Using health education and promotion for tuberculosis management and control in Atwima District: an assessment of factors responsible for tuberculosis patients defaulting

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According to World Health Organization (WHO) 70% or more of the current diseases would have been prevented from infecting other people, if the health promotion and health education activities are well done and are accessible to every individual. Since the Ottawa declaration on health promotion, it has come to stay and to help people to gain control over their own health. Globally, 8.8 million new cases of tuberculosis in 2002 of which 3.9 million were smear- positive were reported (Global Tuberculosis Control Report, 2003). Data about defaulting and non compliance are quite high, above 24% in sub-Saharan Africa (WHO, 2003). Information of TB defaulting in Ghana is not available. With this background, the research was geared towards identifying the factors that might have led to the alarming TB defaulter rate of 30% in Atwima district and how health education could be used as a tool to control TB defaulter rate and to design a health promotion tool for the control of TB defaulting (Atwima District Health Service Report, 2003). The study was descriptive cross sectional. It involved 57 TB clients on one side and 8 ITC’s and 8 sub district heads of Atwima district. The main objective of the study was to assess the factors leading to TB defaulting, to assess the health promotion activities and design a health promotion tool, in the district. The study showed that the major factors involved in TB defaulting in the district were inadequate information about TB, inadequate counseling, stigmatization, family support, distance to health facility, waiting time at the hospitals, side effect of drugs, and inadequate health promotion activities.
A thesis submitted to the Department of Community Health, College of Health Sciences in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science, 2005