Health  Vol.10 No.7 , July 2018
Use of Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests among Medical Doctors in a Tertiary Hospital, South East Nigeria
Abstract: Malaria is a major health problem in Nigeria that has as high as 25% of all global cases, and 30% of deaths attributable to malaria. In 2010, World Health Organization (WHO) recommended universal confirmation of diagnosis of malaria through blood parasitological test, prior to initiation of treatment. In addition to Microscopy, Malaria Rapid diagnostic Tests (mRDTs) are blood tests for malaria. Early diagnosis of malaria ensures that the correct treatment is commenced in good time, and this subsequently improves the prognosis. The objective of this study is to assess the use of mRDTs among medical doctors working in a tertiary hospital, Southeast Nigeria. This study was conducted in Enugu State Teaching hospital, Southeast Nigeria. The study was of cross-sectional design, and conducted in October 2016 among medical doctors working in the General Outpatient, Internal Medicine, and Paediatrics departments of the Teaching hospital. Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20.0 was used for data analysis. A total of 86 medical doctors, out of the eligible 91 in the three departments participated in the study, and were distributed as follows; 24 (27.9%) in the General Outpatient, 30 (34.9%) in the Internal Medicine, and 32 (37.2%) in the Paediatrics departments. More medical doctors in the Paediatrics department (31.3%) used mRDTs in making diagnosis of malaria, followed by Internal medicine (13.3%), then General Outpatient Department (8.3%). Malaria rapid diagnostic tests are cost-effective, and useful tools in malaria control and elimination programmes. If tangible progress on the implementation of the WHO guidelines on confirming diagnosis of malaria before treatment; and the T3: Test, Treat, Track initiative is to be made; then the government and the Management of hospitals ought to take more determined efforts aimed at educating and informing health workers, especially medical doctors on the benefits of mRDTs.
Keywords: Use, Malaria, Rapid, Test, Doctors
Cite this paper: Ndibuagu, E. (2018) Use of Malaria Rapid Diagnostic Tests among Medical Doctors in a Tertiary Hospital, South East Nigeria. Health, 10, 971-984. doi: 10.4236/health.2018.107072.

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