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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 8  |  Issue : 9  |  Page : 2820-2826

Intervention on malaria awareness among 'Bedia' tribal community in West Bengal, India

1 Department of Medicine, MGM Medical College and LSK Hospital, Kishanganj, Bihar, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, MGM Medical College and LSK Hospital, Kishanganj, Bihar, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Ranabir Pal
Department of Community Medicine, MGM Medical College and LSK Hospital, Kishanganj - 855 107, Bihar
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_554_19

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Background: Tribals have a vulnerable health status because of malarial morbidities, yet they ignore their illnesses and do not go to physicians during sickness for several reasons including poverty. Objective: This qualitative research project attempted to create awareness among 'Bedia' tribal to initiate preventive and other personal protective measures against malaria. Methods: Initially, efforts were made to create malaria awareness by literate 'Bedia' volunteers who were trained to do so; however, their tribal fellows were reluctant to receive awareness efforts from them. After thorough analysis and interaction, a novel “interprofessional team” of composer, vocalist, and instrumentalists approach was made to impart malaria awareness by composing songs in the language of the aborigine. Then health education was imparted to the 'Bedia' participants by the trained 'Bedia' through theme songs with their rustic music instruments and group dance performances in the intermingled media from the team. An evaluation was done to assess usefulness of the health education intervention by the researchers. Results: Overall, 137 adult 'Bedias' in 42 families (M = 74; F = 63) participated in our study. In the informal feedback session, only 51 adult males and 46 adult females could furnish expected results. Out of the 42 families residing in the village, 11 houses consistently used mosquito bed nets before the awareness program; after the awareness program, it became 15 as was demonstrated by using social mapping. Conclusions: Our project activities on the Bedia tribes could unearth required interventions of awareness about malaria. However, it was possible to create awareness and confidence among them so that they could themselves take necessary preventive measures and positive approaches toward malaria.

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