Original Research

Knowledge and perception of COVID-19 and its treatment. A community-based survey in South Nigeria

Maureen Ntaji, Ogochukwu C. Okoye, Fredrick Aigbe, John Ohaju-Obodo
Journal of Public Health in Africa | Vol 13, No 3 | a470 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4081/jphia.2022.2036 | © 2024 Maureen Ntaji, Ogochukwu C. Okoye, Fredrick Aigbe, John Ohaju-Obodo | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 11 April 2024 | Published: 07 September 2022

About the author(s)

Maureen Ntaji, Department of Community Medicine, College of Health Sciences, Delta State University, Abraka, Nigeria; Department of Community Medicine, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Nigeria
Ogochukwu C. Okoye, Department of Internal Medicine, College of Health Sciences. Delta State University, Abraka, Nigeria; Nephrology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Nigeria
Fredrick Aigbe, Department of Internal Medicine, College of Health Sciences. Delta State University, Abraka, Nigeria; Cardiology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Nigeria
John Ohaju-Obodo, Department of Internal Medicine, College of Health Sciences. Delta State University, Abraka, Nigeria; Clinical Pharmacology Unit, Department of Internal Medicine, Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara, Nigeria

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Abstract

Background: Media channels increased COVID-19 pandemic uncertainty and disputes, hindering dissemination and acceptance of evidence-based health information. Socioeconomic, cultural, and developmental factors affect a community’s access to credible health information. This community-based study aims to assess semi-urban residents’ understanding of COVID-19.

Methods. This was a cross-sectional study of 384 multistage-sampled residents of the study site. Sociodemographic, psychographic, and COVID-19 and treatment knowledge were obtained using a semistructured questionnaire. Six questions were used to measure knowledge, which was deemed adequate (three or more correct answers) or inadequate (fewer than three correct responses).

Results: 54 out of 364 responders (14.8%) knew COVID-19. 68.9% of respondents stated citrus fruits or spices, 46.1% mentioned infection safety, and 13.3% mentioned chloroquine for prevention. Regarding treatment, 55.5% of responders reported chloroquine and 20.9% hydroxychloroquine. 17% chose ”none of the above.” Class I workers were four times more likely to have adequate knowledge than class V workers (p=0.019), while class III workers were 79% less likely (p=0.046). Males had 68%less knowledge than females (p=0.008).

Conclusions: In this study, adequate knowledge of COVID-19 was low and associated with higher socioeconomic class.


Keywords

COVID-19 knowledge; COVID-19 perception; COVID-19 treatment; COVID-19 medications; COVID-19 prevention; Self-medication

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