Implementation of Health Behavior Education Concerning Liver Flukes among Village Health Volunteers in an Epidemic Area of Thailand


Parasitic Disease Research Unit, Suranaree University of Technology Hospital, Nakhon Ratchasima


Background: Liver fluke infection is associated with cholangiocarcinoma; the bile duct cancer found frequently in the northeast and north of Thailand. Prevention and control particularly requires health education and behavior change. Objective: This study aimed to improve health behavior among village health volunteers (VHV) regarding liver fluke exposure in an epidemic area. Materials and Methods: A quasi-experimental study was performed during July 2015 to January 2016 in Sang Kha district of Surin province, Thailand. A total of 67 VHVs underwent a health education program (HEP) and data were collected on knowledge, attitude, and practice (KAP) before and after participation for HEP 3 months with a pre-designed questionnaire. The Students paired T-test was used for comparisons of mean KAP levels before/after the intervention. Results: The results revealed that knowledge (P-value=0.004), attitude (P-value=0.004), and practice level (P-value=0.000) were significantly improved after participation in the HBP. Attitude was significantly associated with knowledge (r=0.266, <0.05), and practice (r=0.348, <0.01) . Conclusions: The implementation of health education among VHVs is feasible and increases their KAP. This improvement should have potential in liver fluke prevention and control in local communities in rural Thailand.