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Lepr Rev. 1997 Jun;68(2):155-61.

An investigation of attitudes, beliefs and behaviour of leprosy patients, family members and PHC workers towards multidrug therapy in Yangzhou and Dongtai Districts of China.

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Department for Leprosy Research, CAMS & PUMC, National Center for STD and Leprosy Control, Nanjing, China.


To improve the operational efficiency of multidrug therapy (MDT) implementation in rural areas, an investigation into the attitudes, beliefs and behaviour of leprosy patients and their family members as well as primary health care (PHC) workers towards MDT was carried out in Yangzhou and Dongtai Districts of China. A sample of 370 leprosy patients, 594 family members and 730 PHC workers was interviewed or investigated individually using questionnaires. The results showed that: 1, the presently used MDT is acceptable to a wide range of patients although a small number of patients have various problems in their treatment; 2, the patients' habit in daily drug administration, their awareness of the risk of default and confidence in MDT have a positive influence in increasing drug compliance; and 3, the supervision and encouragement of family members to patients' treatment which is associated with their knowledge on MDT is also beneficial to patients' drug compliance. However, only half of the PHC workers had a basic knowledge of MDT and a desire to participate in MDT implementation, a finding which clearly calls for urgent attention and improvement. In order to ensure the effective implementation of MDT, there is a need to educate leprosy patients and their family members as well as PHC workers to establish the patients' correct awareness of MDT, obtain the family support and motivate the PHC workers.

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