Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(3), 955-969; doi:10.3390/ijerph9030955
Article

Pattern of Maternal Knowledge and Its Implications for Diarrhoea Control in Southern Malawi: Multilevel Thresholds of Change Analysis

1 Centre for Water, Sanitation, Health and Appropriate Technology Development (WASHTED), University of Malawi, The Polytechnic, P/B 303, Blantyre, Malawi 2 Environmental Health, Department of Civil Engineering, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, G4 0NG, UK 3 Department of Mathematics and Statistics, University of Malawi, The Polytechnic, P/B 303, Blantyre 3, Malawi 4 Scotland Chikhwawa Health Initiative (SCHI), P.O. Box 30376, Blantyre 3, Malawi 5 Africa Academy for Environmental Health, P.O. Box 15574, Sinoville 0129, South Africa 6 Environmental Health Department, University of Malawi, P/B 303, Chichiri, Blantyre 3, Malawi 7 Department of Mathematical Sciences, University of Malawi, Chancellor College, P.O. Box 280, Zomba, Malawi
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 10 January 2012; in revised form: 5 March 2012 / Accepted: 7 March 2012 / Published: 16 March 2012
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Abstract: A survey was conducted in Southern Malawi to examine the pattern of mothers’ knowledge on diarrhoea. Diarrhoea morbidity in the district is estimated at 24.4%, statistically higher than the national average at 17%. Using hierarchically built data from a survey, a multilevel threshold of change analysis was used to determine predictors of knowledge about diarrhoeal aetiology, clinical features, and prevention. The results show a strong hierarchical structured pattern in overall maternal knowledge revealing differences between communities. Responsible mothers with primary or secondary school education were more likely to give more correct answers on diarrhoea knowledge than those without any formal education. Responsible mothers from communities without a health surveillance assistant were less likely to give more correct answers. The results show that differences in diarrhoeal knowledge do exist between communities and demonstrate that basic formal education is important in responsible mother’s understanding of diseases. The results also reveal the positive impact health surveillance assistants have in rural communities.
Keywords: responsible mother’s knowledge; pattern of variation; diarrhoea control; multilevel threshold of change; southern-tip of Malawi

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MDPI and ACS Style

Masangwi, S.J.; Grimason, A.M.; Morse, T.D.; Kazembe, L.; Ferguson, N.; Jabu, G.C. Pattern of Maternal Knowledge and Its Implications for Diarrhoea Control in Southern Malawi: Multilevel Thresholds of Change Analysis. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9, 955-969.

AMA Style

Masangwi SJ, Grimason AM, Morse TD, Kazembe L, Ferguson N, Jabu GC. Pattern of Maternal Knowledge and Its Implications for Diarrhoea Control in Southern Malawi: Multilevel Thresholds of Change Analysis. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2012; 9(3):955-969.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Masangwi, Salule Joseph; Grimason, Anthony Martin; Morse, Tracy Dawn; Kazembe, Lawrence; Ferguson, Neil; Jabu, George Christopher. 2012. "Pattern of Maternal Knowledge and Its Implications for Diarrhoea Control in Southern Malawi: Multilevel Thresholds of Change Analysis." Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 9, no. 3: 955-969.

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