Health seeking behaviour for Buruli Ulcer disease in the Obom sub-district of the Ga south Municipality of Ghana

Health seeking behaviour for Buruli Ulcer disease in the Obom sub-district of the Ga south Municipality of Ghana

Eric Koka

Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana

The current biomedical Buruli ulcer case management strategies emphasise the importance of early reporting and appropriate medical treatment of nodules before they ulcerate and give rise to deformities and disabilities. However, there are a wide range of factors that influence health seeking behaviour for Buruli ulcer case management. The purpose of the study was to determine health seeking behaviour for Buruli ulcer by affected persons and their families. This was a descriptive study involving both qualitative and quantitative data collection. Thirty (30) in-depth interviews were conducted for Buruli ulcer patients and their corresponding caregivers on barriers and facilitators to health seeking. Three (3) Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) were also conducted among elderly community members. Survey questionnaire interviews were conducted with 300 community respondents in Ga, Akan and Ewe languages in the study area. Systematic sampling was used to select 300 respondents for the survey. The study revealed that most respondents (41.0%) would resort to self-medication as their first treatment option when infected with Buruli ulcer. However, the health seeking of self-medication before seeking biomedical treatment was alarming since it leads to delays in reporting. This is a serious public health concern since delay in reporting could lead to category three lesions.

Keywords: Buruli Ulcer; Health seeking behaviour; treatment; health care utilization; Ghana

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How to cite this article:
Eric Koka. Health seeking behaviour for Buruli Ulcer disease in the Obom sub-district of the Ga south Municipality of Ghana. International Research Journal of Public Health, 2020; 4:43. DOI: 10.28933/irjph-2020-02-1205


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