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Researches Medical sociology and HIV/AIDS
People’s knowledge, attitude, and practice on avian influenza in some selected ethnic minority areas

People’s knowledge, attitude, and practice o­n avian influenza in some selected ethnic minority areas


Vũ Thị Minh Hạnh and colleagues



To examine knowledge, attitude, and practice among 10 ethnic minority groups, which would be the target of radio programs in ethnic languages o­n avian influenza prevention and control; To analyse factors associated with people’s knowledge, attitude, and practice o­n avian influenza A(H5N1) prevention and control; To suggest recommendations o­n information, education, and communication (IEC) activities in general and radio programs in particular.


Study subjects

People from 10 ethnic minorities of HMông, Thái, Ba Na, Ê đê, Gia Rai, Cờ ho, Mơ Nông, Xơ đăng, Chăm, and Khmer in 3 regions

Study settings

Provinces of Sơn La, Đắk Lắk, Ninh Thuận and Kiên Giang



Descriptive and cross-sectional study, using both qualitative and quantitative approaches



•General knowledge o­n A(H5N1) prevention such as name of the diseases, danger level, transmission routes, treatment methods for ill poultry, and prevention methods for transmission from poultry to human, was rather high.

•However, the proportion of respondents who had correct and sufficient knowledge o­n details of transmission sources, disease symptom, reporting channels (when poultry became ill), safe raising methods, and preventive methods for poultry and human was not high. The majority of respondents (> 60%) did not know all transmission sources, of which poultry’s manure was chief,thus revealing a high risk of epidemic outbreak. Less than 50% respondents knew where to report epidemic information to.

•Noticeably, in most provinces, the majority of respondents misunderstood that the disease happened o­nly to confined poultry fed with processed feed, not to free-range chicken.

•Education level and living standards were factors that were significantly associated with people’s awareness o­n A(H5N1) prevention and control. Target groups of IEC in the coming time, therefore, would be those of low income and low education and ethnic minorities living in the Central Highland and South -Western.

•Most households raised chicken in a raditional way. Free-ranging and confining poultry near living area were common. Free-ranging poultry raising o­n rice fields was particularly common in South-Western provinces. Poultry herd was moved within large areas including border-crossing to . This practice made this area prone to epidemic outbreaks. Rate of the households having their poultry vaccinated was low (38.5%).

•There was a big gap between awareness and practice in A(H5N1) prevention and control. The proportion of people having safe behaviors to prevent infection while processing and using poultry’s products was not high.

•Despite of such a big gap, there was still a positive relationship between people’s awareness and preventive behavior. Respondents who knew three or more ways of disease prevention had a safer practice indicator compared to those who knew o­nly o­ne way.

•There was a high proportion of respondents who wanted to receive information o­n the danger of the epidemic, including disease symptoms o­n human and poultry and epidemic situation in and the world. Preferred IEC channels were TV, radio, broadcasting through loudspeaker system, and direct communication. Rating of preferred languages of IEC was 57.6% in Vietnamese and 38.9% in ethnic for broadcasting in TV and radio and 62.4% in Vietnamese and 20.1% in ethnic for written material.

•Preferred hours of IEC were: 19.00 - 22.00 o­n TV, 5.00 - 8.00, and 16.00 - 19.00 o­n radio. The most preferred TV programs were VTV3 and VTV1. IEC programs broadcasted by local radio were rated best, following by Voice of Vietnam radio.



•In the coming time, IEC o­n A(H5N1) prevention and control should focus o­n the following target groups: the poor, low education, free-ranging poultry farmers, and ethnic minorities at the Central Highland and South-Western.

•The following IEC messages should be conveyed: Danger of the disease, updated information o­n incidence in the country and the world; Mutation of virus; Sources of disease transmission and all potential risk factors including manure and saliva of ill poultry, contaminated breeding facilities; Safe breeding methods: selecting poultry from a reliable source,confining new poultry in separated areas, confining poultry in fenced areas far from residential area, cleaning facilities regularly, no free-ranging o­n the field and pond/lake; Treatment methods for ill poultry: providing correct addresses of responsible persons/agencies to be informed of a disease occurrence, proper handling of ill poultry using disposable material for burying and destroying; Updating information related to new symptoms occurring o­n poultry and humans; Methods of preventing disease transmission while processing and using poultry products.

•IEC channels/activities should be used: Compiling and delivering pamphlet to guide people o­n preventing disease transmission to humans and poultry (these pamphlet should be easy to understand with vivid pictures); Organizing seminars to disseminate information and experiences of epidemic treatment; Broadcasting news and reports in ethnic languages o­n mass media, especially o­n central TV programs from 19.00 to 22.00 pm daily; Broadcasting o­n local radio and Voice of Vietnam radio in ethnic languages; Broadcasting through loudspeakers at suitable times (early morning, late afternoon) when number of listeners is high.; In the communities, enhancing the use of direct IEC in local languages, using health workers and mass organizations’ officers as reporters.


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