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Malaria Research and Treatment
Volume 2017, Article ID 7481210, 7 pages
https://doi.org/10.1155/2017/7481210
Research Article

Low Utilization of Insecticide-Treated Bed Net among Pregnant Women in the Middle Belt of Ghana

Kintampo Health Research Centre, P.O. Box 200, Kintampo, Ghana

Correspondence should be addressed to Kwaku Poku Asante; gro.crh-opmatnik@etnasa.ukopukawk

Received 26 January 2017; Revised 20 May 2017; Accepted 13 June 2017; Published 30 July 2017

Academic Editor: Donatella Taramelli

Copyright © 2017 Grace Manu et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. Malaria in pregnancy leads to low birth weight, premature birth, anaemia, and maternal and neonatal mortality. Use of insecticide-treated nets (ITNs) during pregnancy is one of the proven interventions to reduce the malaria burden. However, Ghana has not achieved its target for ITN use among pregnant women. Methods. A qualitative study was conducted in seven communities purposively selected from the middle belt of Ghana. Participants who had delivered in the six months prior to this study were selected. In all, seven focus group discussions and twenty-four in-depth interviews were conducted between June and August 2010. Results. Respondents knew of the importance of ITNs and other malaria-preventive strategies. Factors such as financial access and missed opportunities of free distribution denied some pregnant women the opportunity to own or use an ITN. Reasons for not using ITNs during pregnancy included discomfort resulting from heat, smell of the net, and difficulty in hanging the net. Participants maintained their ITNs by preventing holes in the nets, retreatment, and infrequent washing. Conclusion. Pregnant women know about the causes and prevention of malaria. However, this knowledge is not transformed into practice due to lack of access to ITNs and sleeping discomforts among other logistical constraints.