Knowledge, attitudes and practices towards dog-bite related rabies in para-medical staff at rural primary health centres in Baramati, western India.
The lack of awareness regarding rabies amongst rural primary care health staff and their adverse practices towards the management of dog-bite wounds is a major contributor to the high incidence of rabies infection and subsequent human mortality in India. A Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices survey was carried out involving 54 nursing and non-nursing staff working in 18 rural Primary Health centres and sub-centres around Baramati town of Pune district in Western India. Multivariable logistic regression models were constructed to assess factors that influenced knowledge of rabies and practices towards management of dog-bite related wounds. The more experienced and better-educated workers were found to have a good awareness of rabies (OR 3.4, 95%CI 1.0–12.1) and good practices towards dog-bite wound management (OR 5.6, 95%CI 1.2–27.0). Surprisingly, non-nursing staff were significantly more knowledgeable about rabies (OR 3.5, 95%CI 1.0–12.3), but their practices towards dog-bite wound management were inadequate (OR 0.18, 95%CI 0.04–0.8) compared to the nursing staff. It is recommended that a mandatory training module for primary care health staff be developed and implemented to improve their knowledge regarding rabies and management of dog-bite wounds to reduce the incidence of human rabies in rural India.