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Family Planning Needs of Adolescents in Predominantly Rural Communities in the Central Part of Ghana  [PDF]
Yeetey Enuameh, Obed Ernest Nettey, Emmanuel Mahama, Charlotte Tawiah, Ellen Boamah, Abubakari Sulemana, George Adjei, Stephanie Gyaase, Samuel Afari Asiedu, Alexander Manu, Charles Zandoh, Kwaku Poku Asante, Seth Owusu-Agyei
Open Journal of Preventive Medicine (OJPM) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/ojpm.2015.56030
Abstract: The manuscript presents findings of a descriptive analysis of data from a cross-sectional study of adolescents aimed at identifying their family planning needs and the best approaches to addressing them in the Kintampo Districts of Ghana. Data for the paper were from the family planning module of a sexual and reproductive health survey carried out by the Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance System in 2011. Adolescents in this study recorded high marital (1.6% females and 0.4% males) and pregnancy rates (11.5% females and 1.5% males). Their knowledge of contraceptive methods was high (87.7% females and 82% males), but utilization was low (17.9% females and 6% males). Most study participants viewed family planning as important to their health and wellbeing (59.6% females and 58.6% males). A minority of adolescents were of the perception that contraceptive use was solely the responsibility of women (41.1% females and 32.4% males); and that the use of contraceptives could lead to promiscuity among women (43.8% females and 42.5% males). Those adolescents who previously had unwanted pregnancies would have accepted some help in preventing it (33.1% females and 9.1% males). Recommendations made by respondents included creating a friendly atmosphere by care providers for family planning services delivery to adolescents. Other suggestions were ensuring that family planning services are available and accessible to adolescents, and educating adolescents on the diverse methods available.
Adolescents’ Willingness and Intentions to Use Contraceptives in Rural Ghana  [PDF]
Sulemana Abubakari, Yeetey A. Enuameh, Emmanuel Mahama, Obed Ernest A. Nettey, George Adjei, Gifty Fosuaa Nuamah, Edward Apraku Anane, Robert Adda, Francis Dzabeng, Seeba Amenga-Etego, Charles Zandoh, Kwaku Poku Asante, Seth Owusu-Agyei
Open Journal of Social Sciences (JSS) , 2015, DOI: 10.4236/jss.2015.311029
Abstract: Efforts made to improve the availability and access to family planning services to adolescents in Ghana have not yielded the desired results. Adolescents in the Kintampo Health and Demographic Surveillance System area are no exception. This study explored contraceptive use intentions, preferences and their determinants among adolescents in rural Ghana. This was to contribute evidence towards achieving universal access to reproductive health. A cross-sectional study design was used to collect Sexual and Reproductive Health data in the Kintampo districts in 2011. A total of 1805 female adolescents were randomly sampled from a resident female adolescent population of 16,795. This study used intention and/or willingness of adolescents to use contraceptives as the outcome variable and the explanatory variables were demographic and socioeconomic factors. Descriptive and inferential statistical analyses were done. The findings indicated 54.3% of adolescents’ were willing to use contraceptives. Injectable was the most preferred contraceptive method among adolescents (48.6%); this was followed by the pill (29.6%) with the least being foam or jelly (0.2%). The most commonly cited reason for not intending to use contraception was adolescents’ opposition to family planning (31.5%) followed by a fear of side effects (25.8%). Age and education influenced adolescents’ willingness to use contraceptives in the future. Formal education of the young generation coupled with knowledge of contraceptive methods could yield positive outcomes for contraceptive use and ultimately reproductive health of the adolescent population in the near future.
Local suffering and the global discourse of mental health and human rights: An ethnographic study of responses to mental illness in rural Ghana
Ursula M Read, Edward Adiibokah, Solomon Nyame
Globalization and Health , 2009, DOI: 10.1186/1744-8603-5-13
Abstract: This research forms part of a longitudinal anthropological study of people with severe mental illness in rural Ghana. Visits were made to over 40 households with a family member with mental illness, as well as churches, shrines, hospitals and clinics. Ethnographic methods included observation, conversation, semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions with people with mental illness, carers, healers, health workers and community members.Chaining and beating of the mentally ill was found to be commonplace in homes and treatment centres in the communities studied, as well as with-holding of food ('fasting'). However responses to mental illness were embedded within spiritual and moral perspectives and such treatment provoked little sanction at the local level. Families struggled to provide care for severely mentally ill relatives with very little support from formal health services. Psychiatric services were difficult to access, particularly in rural communities, and also seen to have limitations in their effectiveness. Traditional and faith healers remained highly popular despite the routine maltreatment of the mentally ill in their facilities.Efforts to promote the human rights of those with mental illness must engage with the experiences of mental illness within communities affected in order to grasp how these may underpin the use of practices such as mechanical restraint. Interventions which operate at the local level with those living with mental illness within rural communities, as well as family members and healers, may have greater potential to effect change in the treatment of the mentally ill than legislation or investment in services alone.The contribution of mental disorders to the burden of chronic disease has been re-affirmed in the latest update to the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study. This identifies neuropsychiatric conditions including depression, psychoses and alcohol use disorders, as the leading causes of disability worldwide, represe
Livelihood trends in Response to Climate Change in Forest Fringe Communities of the Offin Basin in Ghana
S Amisah, AB Gyampoh, P Sarfo-mensah, KK Quagrainie
Journal of Applied Sciences and Environmental Management , 2009,
Abstract: The livelihoods of forest fringe communities in Ghana depend, largely, on the renewable natural resources that they can find in the forests and any activities that impacts on the integrity of the forest disrupt the livelihood of the dependent communities. Forest fragmentation continues to take place in Ghana, mainly in response to a growing demand to feed an ever increasing population and for timber exploitation for export. One of the forest fringe communities in Ghana where the rural livelihoods of the people have been compromised due to deforestation and climate change is the Offin basin. The removal of forests impacts on local climate, water availability, and livelihoods due to influence of forests on precipitation and water balance. Fluxes in the quantity and frequency of rainfall contribute to decreasing food production and water availability. This study examines forest loss, precipitation and ambient temperature patterns in the forest fringe communities in the Offin river basin over the past four and a half decades and assesses current impacts and trends on rural livelihoods and coping strategies by the communities. The forests provide the communities with fuel-wood, fish and game, medicinal plants, food sources, and recreation. Between 2000 and 2005 deforestation rate in the basin was 2%. Mean annual precipitation decreased by 22.2% between 1960 and 2000 in response to a 1.3oC rise in ambient temperature over the same period. Considerable changes in the frequency of rainfall and its unpredictability impacted negatively on the livelihood of the fringe communities who are predominantly cocoa and subsistence crop farmers. The livelihood resources of the community are severely constrained leading to reduction in food security and economic losses. In response to deforestation and associated climatic changes, several coping strategies for sustenance of livelihoods have been adopted by the forest fringe communities.
Network Perspectives on Communities
Alvin W. Wolfe
Structure and Dynamics : e-Journal of Anthropological and Related Sciences , 2006,
Abstract: The application of network perspectives to communities requires some appreciation of the variety of ways people are now writing about communities. Some scholars and practitioners have drifted toward the view that a community is composed very largely of the personal networks of the individuals who are members of the community. But the whole community is more than the sum of those related parts, and the structure of a community must include not only those direct interpersonal relations but also the relations among the clusters and groups and corporate entities that interact in and about this whole. If scientific knowledge about these matters is to accumulate, we must be able to compare findings among various studies. From the 1940s well into the 1960s the local community was the recognized social unit that sociologists and anthropologists studied. Linton wrote of the necessity of the local group. Many sociologists and anthropologists gave their full attention to this local level of social integration through a field called “community studies.” The work of Conrad Arensberg, Sol Kimball, Carl Taylor, Robert Redfield, and others had views of communities that had a network cast to them. The category “community” includes a wide range of social formations, generally local systems of fairly densely connected persons in households and organizations, systems on a scale somewhere between those domestic households and the wider society -- state or nation. Recently scholarly focus has shifted to individuals and their personal networks, with less attention to the social structures in which they are embedded. The concept “community” really needs to be defined because it is used in many situations where what it means has real consequences. A network perspective suggests a whole complex social system organized in levels, from a household/family level, upward through a hierarchy of levels, to the national (nation-state) and even beyond that to a supranational (above-state) level. Within that complete social system are embedded several levels of networks that could be called community. The networks that form such a community must be sorted out from the entire complex system. A network perspective on communities – or on structures relating to communities – includes seeing groups both as networks of the individuals composing them and as nodes related to each other through their common members. Such “affiliation networks” are more complex than just the sum of the personal networks. Improved techniques of data collection and data analysis are bringing us closer to sorting subs
Urban, Suburban, and Rural: Adolescents’ Use and Preferences for Fitness Promotion Technologies across Communities  [PDF]
Erika Mikulec,Natalie Goniu,Megan Moreno
ISRN Obesity , 2013, DOI: 10.1155/2013/324259
Abstract: Introduction. An understanding of adolescents’ use of technology across ages and communities could allow for future targeted obesity intervention strategies. Methods. Focus groups of adolescents from rural, suburban, and urban cities in three states were conducted. Focus groups were led by a trained facilitator to explore how participants used technologies and whether they applied them for fitness purposes. All focus groups were audio recorded and manually transcribed. Analysis was conducted by three investigators using an iterative process. Results. Five focus groups included adolescents between the ages of 12 and 18 years (20 females and 8 males.) Three themes were derived from our data. First, we found age differences regarding technology applied to fitness. Younger participants described technology as a complement to fitness; older participants viewed technology as a motivator for fitness. Second, differences in fitness approaches existed between rural and urban adolescents. Adolescents in rural communities reported focusing on the outdoors for fitness, while urban adolescents relied on fitness-oriented video games. Both rural and urban teens related having a lack of fitness-focused resources in their communities. Conclusions. Our findings indicate differences in adolescents’ application of technology for fitness. Despite adolescents’ differing uses of technology across communities, a common need exists to expand their resources. 1. Introduction The increasing prevalence of child and adolescent obesity is a significant public health concern [1, 2]. Approximately 34% of the population between the ages of 12 and 19 years is at risk of overweight and 17% is currently overweight [3]. Additionally, 12.6% of adolescents between 12 and 19 years were considered obese [4]. Children who are overweight or obese are more likely to stay overweight or obese into adulthood, thereby increasing their risk of insulin resistance, diabetes, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease [5]. Despite significant efforts towards understanding and intervening in children and adolescents’ health behaviors surrounding healthy eating and exercise, obesity remains a significant public health issue. Innovative strategies towards reducing this epidemic are clearly needed. One innovative approach may involve technology. The majority of adolescents are increasingly “connected” in a virtual world, using different technologies on a daily basis. Adolescents are avid Internet users; over 90% report access and most report daily use [6]. Of these Internet-using teens, approximately half use
Sero-prevalence of hepatitis B surface (HBsAg) antigen in three densely populated communities in Kumasi, Ghana
N Amidu, A Alhassan, C Obirikorang, P Feglo, SF Majeed, E Timmy-Donkoh, D Afful
Journal of Medical and Biomedical Sciences , 2012,
Abstract: Hepatitis B infection is endemic in many developing countries including Ghana. It is also known that there are differences in the prevalence in communities of different socioeconomic levels. Re-ports are scanty on the seroprevalence of hepatitis B-virus in densely populated suburbs in Kumasi, Ghana. This study was conducted in three densely populated communities in Kumasi to determine the relative seroprevalence of hepatitis B. Serum samples were collected in 2009 during a cross-sectional survey of individuals from Aboabo, Tafo and Garrison and tested for HBsAg using a commercial test kit (One Step HBsAg Test Device, InTEC Products, INC, China) after obtaining their informed consent. A total of 783 subjects (mean age: 37.93 ± 0.62) had their samples collected for testing. There were 376 females and 407 males. A higher prevalence of HBsAg seropositivity was detected among the males (11.79%) as compared to the females (5.33%). Prevalence of sero-positivity was highest among adolescents (19-24 years, 14.14%; 25-34 years, 13.10%) and children (<19 years, 12.26%) and lowest among the aged >54 years old. Of all the three sub-populations sampled, only Garrison was determined to be in the intermediate endemicity class for HBsAg (6.78%); both Aboabo (9.02%) and Tafo (10.0%) are in the high endemicity class. However, overall prevalence of HBsAg seropositivity was 8.68%. Our study suggests that in Ghana, local prevalence of the disease may vary widely, possibly as a consequence of lifestyle and socioeconomic variations even in closely related settlements.
Sero-prevalence of hepatitis B surface (HBsAg) antigen in three densely populated communities in Kumasi, Ghana
Amidu, N.,Alhassan, A.,Obirikorang, C.,Feglo, P.
Journal of Medical and Biomedical Sciences , 2012,
Abstract: Hepatitis B infection is endemic in many developing countries including Ghana. It is also known that there are differences in the prevalence in communities of different socioeconomic levels. Re-ports are scanty on the seroprevalence of hepatitis B-virus in densely populated suburbs in Kumasi, Ghana. This study was conducted in three densely populated communities in Kumasi to determine the relative seroprevalence of hepatitis B. Serum samples were collected in 2009 during a cross-sectional survey of individuals from Aboabo, Tafo and Garrison and tested for HBsAg using a commercial test kit (One Step HBsAg Test Device, InTEC Products, INC, China) after obtaining their informed consent. A total of 783 subjects (mean age: 37.93 ± 0.62) had their samples collected for testing. There were 376 females and 407 males. A higher prevalence of HBsAg seropositivity was detected among the males (11.79%) as compared to the females (5.33%). Prevalence of sero-positivity was highest among adolescents (19-24 years, 14.14%; 25-34 years, 13.10%) and children (<19 years, 12.26%) and lowest among the aged >54 years old. Of all the three sub-populations sampled, only Garrison was determined to be in the intermediate endemicity class for HBsAg (6.78%); both Aboabo (9.02%) and Tafo (10.0%) are in the high endemicity class. However, overall prevalence of HBsAg seropositivity was 8.68%. Our study suggests that in Ghana, local prevalence of the disease may vary widely, possibly as a consequence of lifestyle and socioeconomic variations even in closely related settlements.
Trends in contraceptive use among female adolescents in Ghana
L Abdul-Rahman, G Marrone, A Johansson
African Journal of Reproductive Health , 2011,
Abstract: Within the past one and half decades many efforts have been made to improve the availability and access to adolescent sexual and reproductive health services. Despite these efforts, adolescents still face a number of sexual and reproductive health problems. This paper uses data from the 2003 and 2008 Ghana Demographic and Health Surveys to examine changes in contraceptive use among sexually active female adolescents (15-19 years old). The results show that between 2003 and 2008 there was a significant increase in the current use of any contraceptive method (from 23.7% to 35.1%, p=0.03). It also indicates a shift from modern to traditional contraceptive methods. Traditional methods recorded about 60% (7.8 percentage points) increase as compared to 5.5% (2.6 percentage points) for modern methods. Also ever use of any traditional method recorded a higher increase as compared to any modern method. There was a slight decline 7% (4.4 parentage points) in the number of non-users who intended to use contraceptives in the future. On the whole the findings indicate increasing unmet need for modern contraception due to barriers such as limited access, cost and misconceptions about the effects of contraceptives.
The impact of forest reserves on livelihoods of fringe communities in Ghana
SE Edusah
Journal of Science and Technology (Ghana) , 2011,
Abstract: This study looked at how the livelihoods of forest fringe communities have been affected by the constitution of four forest reserves in Brong Ahafo and Ashanti Regions of Ghana. The selection of the reserves for study was based on the fact that the reserves were surrounded by a number of relatively new and old settlements and have potential for socio-economic activities (agricultural production and ecotourism). Two main research approaches, structured questionnaire and semi-structured interviews were used in the data collection. A structured questionnaire together with open-ended questions was used to collect quantitative and qualitative information on household and community characteristics, including household incomes, farm sizes and tenancy arrangements. An open-ended questionnaire was designed for selected groups and community leaders to solicit their views and perceptions. The study found that farming was the main occupation of the people with cocoa and oil palm being the major cash crops grown in the area. Food crops grown include plantain, maize, cocoyam, cassava and rice. The major tenancy arrangements include family lands, outright purchase and sharecropping. Environmental problems in the area are decline in soil fertility, soil erosion, deforestation, bush fires and depletion of game and wildlife. Incomes were found to be low resulting in high poverty levels. The study shows that the communities have little role to play in the management of forest reserves.
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