0175 - Impact of ebola on mass vitamin A supplementation and deworming coverage in Sierra Leone
To validate the coverage for Vitamin A supplemetation (VAS) and Albendazole (ALB) following the intergrated Maternal and Child Health Week (MCHW), November 2015 (Post-Ebola) and compare these with results from the MCHW, January 2014 (pre-Ebola).
Pro-active, adapted communication strategies had been developed to address Ebola-fears prior to the MCHW in 2015. Representative national Post Event Coverage Surveys were conducted within two weeks of the MCHWs. In all 14 districts, 20 clusters and 25 caregivers of children 6-59 months of age were randomly selected for interview.
Overall there was significantly lower post- versus pre-Ebola coverage for VAS: 88% (6121/6962) and 92% (5518/6033) respectively (p<0.05). There was no significant difference in post-versus pre-Ebola ALB coverage: 86% (4824/5620) and 87% (4542/5206) respectively. Two districts had VAS coverage <80% in 2015: Western Area Urban (79%) and Rural (78%) and one in 2014: Bonthe (76%). There was equitable VAS coverage by age groups 6-11 and 12-59 months both pre and post-Ebola. Measles vaccination had been included in the post-Ebola MCHW for children 9-15 and coverage was 77% (4874/6351). Explanations for their child not having received VAS/ALB were similar ''We were away from the community" and signoficantly more interviewees cited "The team did not visit our house" I did not hear about the campaign" (p<0.001) in 2015 and 4% (37/841) cited "fear of Ebola".
Coverage had been effective although there remain some public-concerns about safety and communication/ distribution in the urbanized Western Area was challenging in this context.
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