Thursday, August 16, 2018
Radio message saves thousands of child's lives in Burkina Faso !
A mass radio campaign in Burkina Faso encouraging parents to seek prompt treatment for sick children has saved thousands of lives, according to a New StudyThe showed that it is also one of the most cost-effective ways of saving children's lives.
"The study showed that in the areas which received the radio intervention, there was an increase in the amount of children being taken to health facilities. In particular, that increase was for the conditions that were the focus for the campaign: malaria, diarrhea, pneumonia,"
The radio campaign provided information to parents on what to do if their children developed symptoms of diarrhea, malaria or pneumonia. It was broadcast on seven radio stations -- each with a signal radius of about 50 kilometers (31 miles) -- between 2012 and 2015. Seven other radio stations served as control zones, in which the campaign wasn't broadcast.
Because each radio station served a particular area of rural Burkina Faso, radio was the predominant form of information and TV was absent, the researchers could effectively and rigorously control for the effects of the radio campaign. In science-speak, it's a randomized controlled trial, and it allows for strong comparisons between groups.
The study showed that where the radio program was broadcast, the number of consultations at primary health centers for malaria, diarrhea and pneumonia for children under the age of 5 increased dramatically, up to 73% in one instance, underlining the effectiveness of information campaigns in changing certain behaviors.
Using mathematical modeling, the researchers estimated that 3,000 lives had been saved as a result of the campaign.