2013: National study on the knowledge of health professionals gets underway

National study on the knowledge of health professionals gets underway

In 2013 ProAct Consultants, based in Addis Ababa, were contracted by PRRP to organise and conduct a on ‘Impact Assessment’. Ato Weletaw Mebrate of ProAct is the project leader. The study focusses on the knowledge of Ethiopian health professionals about the effects of pesticides on human health, the diagnosis and treatment of pesticide poisoning incidences, and on prevention. The study covers the 6 regions of Ethiopia where pesticide use is highest: Amhara, Oromia, SNNPR, Tigray, Gambela and Afar. Almost 2,000 health professionals in different zones, districts and kebele’s will be interviewed by enumerators.

The professionals will include physicians, nurses and community health workers working in both larger health facilities such as regional and specialised hospitals as well as in smaller local clinics. Both private and government sponsored facilities are investigated.

In February, 94 health workers travelled to Addis from their home base and were trained as enumerators by by ProAct personnel. Each enumerator will go back to his or her region, interrogate several of their peers using a tailor-made questionnaire and send the results back to ProAct in Addis for further analysis and reporting. The enumerators were trained in 3 groups, each group for 2 consecutive days. The participants, as it appeared, were mostly young and very motivated health professionals. They were trained on the content of the questionnaires and practiced the interviewing process during several role plays. A very positive side-effect of the training sessions was that, at the same time, these young people were trained in all aspects of pesticides and human health. Once back at their own work, they may immediately put their new knowledge to practice.

As you are reading this newsletter, the first questionnaires are arriving back. The results of the study should be known later this year. The whole study should be repeated 5-10 years from now in order to assess the progress in the level of knowledge about pesticides among health workers as a result of training and education.


Three groups of young motivated health workers from all over Ethiopia were trained in Addis Ababa in February for the national survey on health professionals knowledge about pesticide issues.