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11.12.2015 | Original Paper | Ausgabe 3/2016

Journal of Community Health 3/2016

Hypertension and Diabetes Mellitus: A Preliminary South African Health Promotion Activity Using Service-Learning Principles

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Community Health > Ausgabe 3/2016
Autoren:
Sunitha C. Srinivas, Sharli Anne Paphitis

Abstract

A marked increase in the chronic non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and diabetes mellitus in the South African population is in concert with global trends. A health promotion activity carried out by pharmacy students for school learners during the Sasol National Festival of Science and Technology (SciFest) in South Africa was used as a service-learning opportunity. Pilot tested quizzes on hypertension and diabetes were used to determine the level of knowledge of attendees before and after taking the computer based quiz. Posters, information leaflets and interactive models on these two conditions were also used to reach out to the larger population. Of the 203 participants for the hypertension quiz, 169 completed both the pre- and post-intervention quizzes. Similarly, 86 of the 104 participants for the diabetes quiz, completed both the pre- and post-intervention quizzes. The results show that the post-intervention quiz resulted in a significant increase in the scores from 78.2 to 85.6 % in the case of Hypertension while a marginal increase from 94.2 to 95.5 % was obtained in the case of diabetes. The knowledge of the SciFest attendees with regard to both conditions is above average and improved further after the educational intervention. Health promotion activities which include interactive educational methods and culturally appropriate materials carried out by pharmacy students during service-learning courses are important for improving the awareness on the prevention of these chronic health conditions. Heath promotion service-learning courses can assist in addressing the health care gaps which arise because of a lack of co-ordinated efforts between NGO’s and local Government to address the prevention and management of non-communicable diseases such as hypertension and diabetes mellitus.

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