oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Bilharzia in a small irrigation community: an assessment of water and toilet usage

Volume 38, Issue 12
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



A questionnaire study was conducted in the Mushandike small scale irrigation schemes in Zimbabwe to investigate the following: 1) to establish whether field latrines are used or not; 2) to find out why people visit natural water bodies for bathing and laundry instead of using water from boreholes for these purposes; 3) to assess people's knowledge on the transmission and control of schistosomiasis. Results of the study indicated that the field latrines are utilised and that the borehole water is not preferred for bathing and laundry because of its hardness and oily nature. The results further indicated that the community was aware of schistosomiasis but their knowledge on transmission and control of the disease was limited. Possible reasons for the observations made are discussed in the paper and recommendations emanating from the study are stated.

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