ACTwatch 2; On the Field

ACTwatch2, Society for Family Health’s marketing research project in partnership with Population Services International and the National Malaria Elimination Programme/Federal Ministry of Health commenced training sessions for ACTwatch2 Outlet Survey in Nigeria. The Outlet Survey is aimed at evaluating the impact of change in terms of stocking, availability and price of artemisin-based combination therapies (ACTs) for treating malaria. Results from the survey will promote access to effective treatment and ultimately contribute to changing the behaviour of caregivers in pharmacies, patent proprietary medicine vendor shops and public health facilities.

An intense two weeks of training was held for about 90 researchers who were selected to conduct the survey across Nigeria. Training topics such as: outlet types, fieldwork logistics, data management, map reading, generic & brand names, audit forms, consent forms, and etc were styled with role plays, tests and other strategies to ensure quality of data collection on the field. Probable obstacles on the field such as weather and difficult terrains were also addressed and solutions were proffered by the trainers and participants of the first Outlet Survey which ended in 2012.

Participants in the training expressed that it was satisfactory and comprehensible. “My awareness on the effects of malaria particularly in Sub Saharan Africa has increased. I have become familiar with the chemical composition of anti-malaria medicines”. Mrs Chinazo Ujuju, Project Manager ACTwatch2 said that a successful pilot was conducted in Karu, Abuja immediately after the trainings to evaluate the trainees. Facilitators emphasised team work and attention to detail to achieve success in the survey which commenced in early November 2013.

The survey will be translated to Igbo, Yoruba and Hausa and will be divided into two main parts. The first section, a drug audit sheet, will determine the antimalarial generic name, brand name, manufacturer, price, and any stock outs. The second part, a provider questionnaire, contains information on the number of providers, the type of education, provider knowledge, perceptions on the most effective treatment. The survey is expected to run over the next couple of months.

Society for Family Health Nigeria is a union of people who believe in harnessing the power of the private sector to bring about health benefits to the Nigerian populace. SFH aims to improve access to essential health information, services and products nationwide; and to motivate the public adoption of healthy behavior using evidence-based behaviour change communication with a consistent focus on the poor and vulnerable. SFH implements programmes in malaria prevention and treatment, HIV & AIDS, Maternal and Child Healthcare, Family Planning & Reproductive Health, Clean and Safe Water Systems, Cervical Cancer Prevention & Treatment across 36 states of Nigeria and the FCT.

“Society for Family Health, Nigeria… Creating Change, Enhancing Lives”

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