Householder perspectives and preferences on water storage and use, with reference to dengue in the Mekong Delta, Southern Vietnam

Publisher:
Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygeine
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Citation:
International Health, 2010, 2 (2), pp. 136 - 142
Issue Date:
2010-01
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Community-based perceptions and behaviour around water source preference, household water storage patterns and water use, and householders knowledge and behaviour with respect to dengue etiology and transmission, were examined in three communes located in the Mekong Delta area in southern Vietnam. Through focus group discussions, most participants identified poorly screened or uncovered water containers (including household water storage containers and other types of artificial containers) as habitats for mosquitoes that transmit dengue viruses, and thereby demonstrated a clear understanding of the links between household water storage practices and the threat of dengue. Our qualitative analyses also revealed broader community-based concerns about the limited availability of water and strong preferences for storage of rainwater based upon perceptions of cost, quality and security of supply. These perceptions are central to shaping householders responses to water infrastructure projects. The limited availability of water during the dry season and insufficient numbers of water storage containers are over-riding community concerns which provide an important context to understanding community behaviours and responses to public health interventions against dengue. Such concerns are important precursors to selecting the type of intervention.
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