Project Launch: 3-9-17
Malaria is a leading cause of death of children under 5 in Togo. Despite repeated national programs to distribute bed nets, malaria remains an enormous problem. Recent investigative statistics have shown that of the Togolese households that received bed nets to protect sleeping family members from the biting mosquito that spreads the illness, less than one third reported having slept under a bed net the night before. Lack of behavior change is a cited barrier to rooting out malaria in Togo and this project hopes to better understand why those at risk have not effectively changed their behavior in order to prevent further exposure to malarial infection.
Project Update: 9-29-17
The action research team in Togo implemented a national study on the determinants to bed net behavior to inform the national mosquito net distribution that took place September 21-25, 2017. Since May 2017, PC Togo has been working with the PNLP, Catholic Relief Services (CRS), Prefectural Health Directors, and local clinic staff throughout the country to use this data to inform distribution communications as well as to develop messaging and campaign materials for Community Health Workers (CHWs) and other community health agents. Initial findings have found key patterns differ between regions and ethnicities with regard to the use of bed nets and knowledge of malarial disease.
Final Report: 6-13-18
The project was able to effectively implement a mosquito net behavior Barrier Analysis (BA) research study across all five regions of Togo. Notably, this is the first-ever BA case-study performed in Togo. This research study entailed extensive training of both Peace Corps Volunteers and host-country counterparts on malaria prevention and BA methodology, conducting 442 surveys, hosting a data analysis and coding summit, creating messaging for community health workers to use in the field during post bed net distribution follow-up, and organizing two datasharing seminars with community leaders from 14 different villages. So far, 4,193 unique individuals across Togo have participated in a health talk that used the messaging from the data collected. In addition, the project was able to conduct a second barrier analysis study on family planning in the Central Region and the results were shared with community members during the data-sharing seminars.