A national survey of public awareness of antimicrobial resistance in nigeria
Background: One of the objectives of the Global Action Plan by the World Health Organization (WHO) to contain antimicrobial resistance (AMR), is to improve global awareness through effective communication and education. Comprehensive information on the level of awareness of AMR among Nigerian public is deficient. This study was therefore designed to assess the current level of awareness and knowledge of the Nigerian public of AMR. Methods: Pre-tested and validated questionnaire was used to obtain information from the general public across the six geopolitical zones (North Central, North East, North West, South East, South South and South West) in Nigeria. Multi-stage sampling was used to select one state from each zone and respondents were selected through a multi-stage sampling technique. Responses to eight questions were used to grade the level of knowledge categorized as poor, fair and good. Collation and analysis of data were performed at the Microbiology Department of the Nigerian Institute of Medical Research (NIMR), Lagos, Nigeria, using SPSS version 24.0. Results: Questionnaires from 482 respondents comprising 242 (50.2%) females and 240 (49.8%) males from six states (Lagos, Ebonyi, Delta, Plateau, Borno and Jigawa) were analyzed. Of the 482 respondents, 322 (66.8%) had taken antibiotics in the last six months out of which 31.3% were without prescription. 26.1% of respondents believe they don’t need to complete the dosage as long as they feel better. Although 272(56.5%) of the respondents were familiar with the term “antibiotic resistance”, only 40(8.3%) had good knowledge of AMR. A majority (76.6%) believed that they were powerless to stop the spread of AMR. There was no association between the gender of respondents and knowledge of AMR (p=0.13). However, respondents from Ebonyi and Delta states in southern Nigeria were more likely to have good knowledge of AMR (X2 =53.22, P<0.0001). The respondents in the urban area had a higher score for knowledge level compared to the rural dwellers, though this was not statistically significant within and across states. Conclusion: This survey provides an insight into the level of AMR awareness and antibiotic use in the wider Nigeria public. Our findings show that about a third of the general public consume antibiotics obtained without prescription. There is an overall poor understanding of antimicrobial resistance and/or proper use of antibiotics among respondents. It is critical that more holistic public enlightenment programs are carried out to increase awareness of AMR and promote responsible use of antibiotics.
Antibiotics , Antimicrobial resistance , Awareness , General public , Nigeria
Chukwu, E.E, Oladele, D.A, Awoderu, O.B, Afocha, E.E, Lawal, R.G, Abdus-salam, I, Ogunsola, F.T. and Audu, R.A. A national survey of public awareness of antimicrobial resistance in Nigeria. 2020;9(72), https://doi.org/10.1186/s13756-020-00739-0.