A new study conducted by Makerere University School of Public health has revealed that the covid-19 preventive measures are capable of reducing child respiratory infections.
Titled ‘Effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on Access to Community Health Care Services for Common Childhood Illnesses Among Children Under the Age of Five in Wakiso District, Uganda’, the study findings indicate that infections like pneumonia reduced by 48% during the period of the study.
The Principal Investigator, Dr Thereza Piloya Were, revealed that pneumonia rates have reduced because of the measures put in place to contain the spread of COVID-19.
She noted that the number of children visiting Village Health Team members (VHTs) reduced due to various factors.
“Children visiting VHTs in Wakiso district with acute respiratory infections (Pneumonia) reduced by 48% from the 311 seen in the pre-covid period to 169 in the initial Covid-19 period (April and May).”
“It could have been the case because of the restrictions; very few people could afford transportation to go to the facilities. So we waited to see if the decrease at the VHTs could be the same case at the facilities,” Dr. We’re said.
She noted, however, that no significant change was noticed even after the restrictions were eased.
The study findings, based on this fact, concluded that the covid-19 preventive measures are capable of preventing the spread of such infections, and recommended practice of such measures.
“Actually, the measures that prevent the spread of covid-19 are known measures that prevent pneumonia and Respiratory Tract Infections. So, hand washing is one of the preventive measures of coughs and flues and wearing a mask is a proven measure,” Dr. Were said.
The study was funded by the government of Uganda through the Makerere University Research and Innovations Fund.