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PLoS One. 2010 Nov 29;5(11):e15066. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0015066.

Determinants of use of intermittent preventive treatment of malaria in pregnancy: Jinja, Uganda.

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  • 1Department of Global Health, University of Washington, Seattle, Washington, USA.



Maternal malaria is associated with serious adverse pregnancy outcomes. One recommended means of preventing malaria during pregnancy is intermittent preventive therapy (IPTp) with sulfadoxine/pyrimethamine (SP). We sought to identify determinants of preventive use of SP during pregnancy among recently pregnant women in Uganda. Additionally, we characterized the timing of and indications for the administration of SP at antenatal care (ANC) visits and missed opportunities for SP administration.


Utilizing a population-based random sample, we interviewed 500 women living in Jinja, Uganda who had been pregnant in the past year. Thirty-eight percent (192/500) of women received SP for the treatment of malaria and were excluded from the analysis of IPTp-SP. Of the remaining women, 275 (89.3%) reported at least two ANC visits after the first trimester and had an opportunity to receive IPTp-SP according to the Ugandan guidelines, but only 86 (31.3%) of these women received a full two-dose course of IPTp. The remaining 189 (68.7%) women missed one or more doses of IPTp-SP. Among the 168 women that were offered IPTp, 164 (97.6%) of them took the dose of SP.


Use of IPTp in Uganda was found to be far below target levels. Our results suggest that women will take SP for IPTp if it is offered during an ANC visit. Missed opportunities to administer IPTp-SP during ANC were common in our study, suggesting provider-level improvements are needed.

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