1458. Acute Febrile Illness (AFI) in Haiti, Etiology and Socio-Behavioral Pilot Study
Session: Poster Abstract Session: Global Health
Saturday, October 5, 2013
Room: The Moscone Center: Poster Hall C
Background: The devastating earthquake of 2010 in Haiti and subsequent floods have left countless people displaced and homeless, living outdoors or in temporary shelters increasing the risk for contracting various diseases, in particular malaria, dengue, influenza, and leptospirosis. There is insufficient data on health-seeking behaviors and utilization of medical care, including vaccine uptake in Haiti; however these factors have important implications on treatment and prevention measures of AFI. 

Methods: Surveys were conducted with translators in both urban and rural areas of Haiti during medical mission trips from June 2012 to February 2013. Data was collected on:  1) disease typologies for acute febrile illness; 2) perceptions of these diseases including causality, prevention, severity, vulnerability, prevalence, and treatment; 3) decision-making processes for treatment seeking; 4) described treatment seeking for most recent febrile illness including self-treatment, use of traditional healers/religious healers, pharmacies, clinics, and hospitals; 5) obstacles to seeking care, e.g., costs, transportation, etc. Surveys were analyzed for patterns in responses.

Results: 204 survey responses were collected from individuals who visited the local health clinics. Mean age (± SD) was 38 ± 15.6 years, 63% were female, 85% unemployed, and 40% had secondary education as the highest level. 28% of respondents said they and other household members (>=16 years) went to the hospital for healthcare when sick, while 24% said they self-treated and visited local clinics and hospitals. On average, respondents visited a healthcare facility 4.6 times in the past 6 months, with a chief complaint of fever (35%).  79% said their religious leader was their main source of healthcare information. 92% agreed that vaccines are effective at preventing diseases, and 94% had either their child or themselves vaccinated. 50% had or knew someone who contracted malaria, while 58% had never heard of dengue. 

Conclusion: This information is useful in identifying perceptions of AFI, barriers to healthcare, and the need to address gaps in prevention methods when creating public health programs to better serve the Haitian population.

Samia Arshad, MPH1, Linda Kaljee, Ph.D.2, Paul Kilgore, MD, MPH3, Carolyn Chan, BS4, Tyler Prentiss, BS1, Samantha Bruni, BS4, Jennie Meier, BS4, Adhnan Mohamed, BS4 and Marcus J. Zervos, MD1, (1)Infectious Diseases, Henry Ford Hospital, Detroit, MI, (2)Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, (3)Pharmacy Practice, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, (4)Wayne State University, School of Medicine, Detroit, MI


S. Arshad, None

L. Kaljee, None

P. Kilgore, Pfizer: Grant Investigator, Grant recipient

C. Chan, None

T. Prentiss, None

S. Bruni, None

J. Meier, None

A. Mohamed, None

M. J. Zervos, Pfizer: Investigator, Research support

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