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Title: Community-informed research on malaria in pregnancy in Monrovia, Liberia: a grounded theory study
Author: Tarr-Attia, Christine K.
Bassat Orellana, Quique
Breeze-Barry, Bondey
Lansana, Dawoh Peter
Meyer García-Sípido, Ana
Sarukhan, Adelaida
Maixenchs, Maria
Mayor Aparicio, Alfredo Gabriel
Martínez Pérez, Guillermo
Keywords: Embarassades
Pregnant women
Issue Date: 23-Oct-2018
Publisher: BioMed Central
Abstract: Background: Liberia is a West African country that needs substantial investment to strengthen its National Malaria Control Programme (NMCP), which was disrupted during the 2014–2016 Ebola epidemic. As elsewhere, Liberian pregnant women are especially vulnerable to malaria. Understanding prevention and treatment-seeking behaviours among the population is crucial to strategize context-specifc and women-centred actions, including locally-led malaria research, to improve women’s demand, access and use of NMCP strategies against malaria in pregnancy. Methods: In 2016, after the Ebola crisis, a qualitative inquiry was conducted in Monrovia to explore populations’ insights on the aetiology, prevention and therapeutics of malaria, as well as the community and health workers’ perceptions on the utility of malaria research for pregnant women. In-depth interviews and focus group discussions were conducted among pregnant women, traditional community representatives and hospital staf (n=38), using a feminist interpretation of grounded theory. Results: The narratives indicate that some Liberians believed in elements other than mosquito bites as causes of malaria; many had a low malaria risk perception and disliked current efective prevention methods, such as insecticide-treated nets; and some would resort to traditional medicine and spiritual care to cure malaria. Access to clinic-based malaria care for pregnant women was reportedly hindered by lack of fnancial means, by unofcial user fees requested by healthcare workers, and by male partners’ preference for traditional medicine. The participants suggested that malaria research in Liberia could help to design evidence-based education to change current malaria prevention, diagnostic and treatment-seeking attitudes, and to develop more acceptable prevention technologies. Conclusion: Poverty, insufcient education on malaria, corruption, and poor trust in healthcare establishment are structural factors that may play a greater role than local traditional beliefs in deterring Liberians from seeking, access‑ ing and using government-endorsed malaria control strategies. To increase access to and uptake of preventive and biomedical care by pregnant women, future malaria research must be informed by people’s expressed needs and constructed meanings and values on health, ill health and healthcare.
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It is part of: Malaria Journal, 2018, vol. 17, num. 382
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ISSN: 1475-2875
Appears in Collections:Articles publicats en revistes (ISGlobal)

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