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The Impact of the School Based Deworming Program on Education in the Kwahu West Municipality of Ghana

The International Institute for Science, Technology and Education (IISTE)
Publication Date
  • Education


Soil transmitted helminthic (STH) infections harm the health and cognitive development of school aged children and limit their ability to both access and benefit fully from the educational system. This study sought to assess the impact of the school based deworming program undertaken in the Kwahu West Municipality of Ghana by examining the impact of the program on absenteeism, measuring soil transmitted helminthic re-infections and ascertaining the prevalence of STH among school aged children in the municipality. Two hundred and eighty six participants were selected from seven beneficiary basic schools which were chosen from each of the seven circuits in the municipality. Stool samples from these pupils were collected and analyzed using the Kato-Katz microscopy procedure to determine STH infections among the participants. School attendance records and registers were also examined for all the participating pupils to ascertain school attendance and absenteeism among them. From the study, it was realized that 17 out of the 286 participants were infected with STH. Eleven pupils had been infected with Ascaris lumbricoides representing 64.7% of the total STH infections. Four pupils (23.5%) were infected with Trichuris trichiura. Three Ancylostoma duodenale infections were also recorded representing 11.8% of the total infections. From the school attendance records, it was observed that there was an 8% decrease in absenteeism among the participants of the study from 23.7% in the first term to 15.7% in the second term. All 17 infected participants had missed more than one school day in the second term. STH prevalence among school aged children was calculated as 6%. The study concluded that there was a positive impact of the deworming on school attendance and participation. Proper education on hygienic practices and provision of basic sanitation facilities can help to reduce the rate of STH infections. Keywords: deworming, absenteeism, soil transmitted helminth infections, prevalence, education

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