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Cadernos de Saúde Pública

Print version ISSN 0102-311XOn-line version ISSN 1678-4464


MACIEL, Ethel Leonor Noia et al. Community health workers and tuberculosis control: knowledge and perceptions. Cad. Saúde Pública [online]. 2008, vol.24, n.6, pp.1377-1386. ISSN 0102-311X.

This study analyzes the knowledge of community health workers in tuberculosis control and their self-perceived knowledge and the importance they ascribe to their role in fighting the disease, in Vitória, Espírito Santo State, Brasil. The study adopted a cross-sectional design, with a pre-tested, semi-structured questionnaire completed by 105 randomly selected health workers. The comparison of proportions between the groups formed by stratification according to time-on-the-job used the chi-squared test with 5% significance. Mean age was 34.5 (±9.7) years. Sixty-six community health workers (62.9%) had worked on the job for three years or less. Longer time on the job was positively associated with increased understanding of the disease and activities actually performed in TB control. Still, numerous flaws were observed in TB knowledge and control measures among community health workers. Improvements in continuing education for these workers could foster a more effective contribution to detecting new TB cases in the community and improved treatment adherence by patients.

Keywords : Attitude of Health Personnel; Tuberculosis; Knowledge.

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