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Year : 2014  |  Volume : 7  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 732-737

A study on awareness regarding swine flu (influenza A H1N1) pandemic in an urban community of Karnataka

1 Department of Community Medicine, Azeezia Institute of Medical Sciences, Kerala, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, PESIMSR, Kuppam, Andhra Pradesh, India
3 Department of Community Medicine, Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College, KLE University Belgaum, Karnataka, India
4 Department of Microbiology, Azeezia Institute of Medical Sciences, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
B A Praveen Kumar
Department of Community Medicine, PESIMSR, Kuppam, Andhra Pradesh
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/0975-2870.144862

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Background: Globally, India was one among the most affected countries for cases and deaths of swine flu (influenza A H1N1) during 2009 influenza pandemic with lot of public hype and panic. Aims: This study was designed to assess the awareness, attitude, myths and practices regarding Swine flu among urban population of Belgaum district, Karnataka. Subjects and Methods: This study was conducted in an urban community of Belgaum, Karnataka during 2009. A total of 250 households were interviewed using a pretested questionnaire by systematic random sampling. One person from each household preferably head of the family was asked regarding knowledge, attitude and practice during swine flu pandemic. Results: Among the study population, 73.6% had previously heard of swine flu. More than half of the participants said mass media communication was found to be the major source of information. Around 82.6% of the participants said fever was the most common symptom and using facemask was accepted as the important mode of prevention by 81.5% participants. Only 19.0% were willing to leave their locality temporarily if any cases were seen around. Majority of the participants selected government hospital for treatment facilities if they get any symptoms of swine flu. Hand washing, as a mode of prevention was known to 92.4% of the respondents. Around 33.4% of the populations were ready to share knowledge to others if they were given health education regarding swine flu. Conclusions: Knowledge regarding swine flu pandemic was low among study participants. Most of the participants had health seeking behavior. Majority of the respondents were practicing hand washing. Strategies to create more awareness about pandemic through effective mass media are vital for containing the pandemic.

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