Insights into Malaria: A Cross-sectional Survey on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices in South-South Nigeria

Airenakho Emorinken *

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria and Department of Medicine, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Mercy Ofunami Dic-Ijiewere

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria and Department of Medicine, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Eseohe Victoria Uhomohasebhor

Department of Medicine, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Jane Noma Iguma-Asaka

Department of Medicine, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Ndidi Akerele

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria.

Blessyn Omoye Akpasubi

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria.

Patrick Ojo Adunbiola

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria and Department of Medicine, Ambrose Alli University, Ekpoma, Edo State, Nigeria.

Barbara Okoh

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria.

Hannah Olohirere Izirein

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria.

Orebowale A. Olugbemide

Department of Internal Medicine, Irrua Specialist Teaching Hospital, Irrua, Edo State, Nigeria.

*Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.


Background: Malaria is a public health concern deeply ingrained within local communities in sub-Saharan Africa. Local beliefs and practices play a critical role in defining the effectiveness of control measures. This study aimed to assess the knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding malaria in a rural community in South-South Nigeria.

Methods: This cross-sectional study was conducted in Ugun in South-South Nigeria. Data were collected from the participants using an interviewer-administered questionnaire. Data analysis was performed using SPSS and a P-value of < 0.05 was considered significant.

Results: This study included 300 participants with a mean age of 51.6 ± 20.9 years. The results showed that 28.3% had good knowledge, 55.7% had a positive attitude, and 44.7% demonstrated good practices regarding malaria. Knowledge scores were associated with the education (P < 0.012) and occupation (P < 0.001) of participants, while attitude scores were associated with the occupation (P = 0.002) and marital status of participants (P < 0.001). Age, education, occupation, and marital status were associated with participants' practice scores (P < 0.001). Civil servants (OR = 4.97; 95% CI: 1.69 - 14.61; P = 0.004) and pensioners (OR = 7.26; 95% CI: 1.98-26.61; P = 0.003) had higher odds of having good knowledge of malaria than farmers. Married participants (OR = 5.02; 95% CI: 1.51 - 16.66; P = 0.008) and those with good knowledge (OR = 1.94; 95% CI: 1.11 - 3.42; P = 0.021) had higher odds of exhibiting a positive attitude. Participants with primary (OR = 6.21; 95% CI: 2.59 - 14.86; P < 0.001) and secondary (OR = 12.04; 95% CI: 3.89 - 37.31); P < 0.001) education had higher odds of adopting good practices than those with informal education.

Conclusion: Although more than half of the participants had a positive attitude towards malaria, the majority showed insufficient knowledge and poor practices related to the disease. This highlights the pressing need for targeted public health educational programs to improve community understanding and promote effective practices for malaria control.

Keywords: Malaria, knowledge, attitude, practice, South-South Nigeria

How to Cite

Emorinken, Airenakho, Mercy Ofunami Dic-Ijiewere, Eseohe Victoria Uhomohasebhor, Jane Noma Iguma-Asaka, Ndidi Akerele, Blessyn Omoye Akpasubi, Patrick Ojo Adunbiola, Barbara Okoh, Hannah Olohirere Izirein, and Orebowale A. Olugbemide. 2024. “Insights into Malaria: A Cross-Sectional Survey on Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices in South-South Nigeria”. International Journal of TROPICAL DISEASE & Health 45 (7):26-41.


Download data is not yet available.


World Health Organization. Fact sheet about malaria; 2023. Accessed 14 October 2023. Available:

World Health Organisation. World Malaria Report 2022; 2022. Accessed 14 October 2023.


Report on malaria in Nigeria 2022. WHO Regional Office for Africa; 2023. Accessed 15 October 2023.


White NJ, Day NPJ, Ashley EA, Smithuis FM, Nosten FH. Have we really failed to roll back malaria? Lancet. 2022; 399(10327):799–800

World Health Organization. Global technical strategy for malaria 2016-2030, 2021 update. 2021. Accessed 14 October 2023. Available:

World Health Organization. Zeroing in on malaria elimination: Final report of the E-2020 initiative. 2021. Accessed 21 October 2023. Available:

Sokunbi TO, Omojuyigbe JO, Bakenne HA, Adebisi YA. Nigeria end malaria council: What to expect. Ann Med Surg. 2022;82:104690.

Maduka O. End malaria for good: A review of current strategies and future novelties for malaria elimination in Nigeria. Malar World J. 2018;9(1):1-4.

Awasthi KR, Jancey J, Clements ACA, Leavy JE. A qualitative study of knowledge, attitudes, and perceptions towards malaria prevention among people living in rural upper river valleys of Nepal. PLoS One. 2022;17(3):e0265561.

Ezihe EK, Egbuche CM, Ukonze CB, Nwangwu UC, Onwude CO, Amakiri P, et al. The Impact of Human and Socio-cultural behavior on Outdoor malaria transmission in a rural community of Nigeria: The Nyumagbagh Experience. N Y Sci J. 2020;13(2):86–99.

Awasthi KR, Adefemi K, Awasthi MS, Chalise B. Public Health Interventions for Control of Malaria in the Population Living in the Terai Region of Nepal. J Nepal Health Res Counc. 2018;15(3):202–7.

Mazigo HD, Obasy E, Mauka W, Manyiri P, Zinga M, Kweka EJ, et al. Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices about Malaria and Its Control in Rural Northwest Tanzania. Malar Res Treat. 2010;2010:794261.

Singh R, Musa J, Singh S, Ebere UV. Knowledge, attitude, and practices on malaria among the rural communities in Aliero, Northern Nigeria. J Fam Med Prim Care. 2014; 3(1):39-44.

Uzochukwu BSC, Ossai EN, Okeke CC, Ndu AC, Onwujekwe OE. Malaria Knowledge and Treatment Practices in Enugu State, Nigeria: A Qualitative Study. Int J Health Policy Manag. 2018;7(9):859–66.

Oguntade ES, Shohaimi S, Nallapan M, Lamidi-Sarumoh AA. Factors Influencing Malaria Knowledge, Attitude and Practice in Gwagwalada. Int J Sci Healthc Res. 2018;3(3):168-78.

Aderaw Z, Gedefaw M. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice of the Community towards Malaria Prevention and Control Options in Anti-Malaria Association Intervention Zones of Amahara National Regional State, Ethiopia. J Trop Dis. 2013;1(3):100118.

Musoke D, Karani G, Ssempebwa JC, Etajak S, Guwatudde D, Musoke MB. Knowledge and practices on malaria prevention in two rural communities in Wakiso District, Uganda. Afr Health Sci. 2015;15(2):401–12.

Lopez AR, Brown CA. Knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding malaria prevention and control in communities in the Eastern Region, Ghana, 2020. PLoS One. 2023;18(8):e0290822.

FGN. Federal Republic of Nigeria Official Gazette, Abuja. 2009. Accessed 26 October 2023.


Igueben (Local Government Area, Nigeria) - Population Statistics, Charts, Map and Location. Accessed 30 October 2023. Available:

Flatie BT, Munshea A. Knowledge, Attitude, and Practice towards Malaria among People Attending Mekaneeyesus Primary Hospital, South Gondar, Northwestern Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study. J Parasitol Res. 2021;2021: 5580715.

Karki R, Bartoula N, Kaphle M, Shah SK. Knowledge, and practice of malaria prevention among residents of Ratuwamai Municipality, Nepal. One Health Bull. 2023;3(1):6.

Diema Konlan K, Amu H, Konlan KD, Japiong M. Awareness and Malaria Prevention Practices in a Rural Community in the Ho Municipality, Ghana. Interdiscip Perspect Infect Dis. 2019;2019:9365823.

Ekeleme NC, Ijioma CE, Unachukwu NA, Ejikem PI, Areh JE, Ogwu CI, et al. Attitudes and Practices of Insecticide Treated Bed Nets Usage among Rural Dwellers in Oyo State, Nigeria. Int J Trop Dis Health. 2023;44(15):43–58.

Fatugase O, Amoran O, Fatugase O. The Impact of Health Education Intervention on Perception and Treatment Seeking Behaviour About Childhood Infections among Caregivers in Rural Communities in Western Nigeria. Br J Med Med Res. 2013;3(4):1331–43.

Koroma JM, Wang Y, Guo X, Zhang X, Ngobeh JJK, Gabir AMEA, et al. A Cross-Sectional Survey on the Malaria Control and Prevention Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices of Caregivers of Children Under-5 in the Western Area of Sierra Leone. Trop Med Infect Dis. 2022;7(7):120.

Gupta R, Raina S, Shora T, Jan R, Sharma R, Hussain S. A household survey to assess community knowledge, attitude, and practices on malaria in a rural population of Northern India. J Fam Med Prim Care. 2016;5(1):101-7.

Fuge TG, Ayanto SY, Gurmamo FL. Assessment of knowledge, attitude, and practice about malaria and ITNs utilization among pregnant women in Shashogo District, Southern Ethiopia. Malar J. 2015;14:235.

Abate A, Degarege A, Erko B. Community knowledge, attitude, and practice about malaria in a low endemic setting of Shewa Robit Town, northeastern Ethiopia. BMC Public Health. 2013;13(1): 312.

Kebede DL, Hibstu DT, Birhanu BE, Bekele FB. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Towards Malaria and Associated Factors in Areka Town, Southern Ethiopia: Community-Based Cross-Sectional Study. J Trop Dis. 2017;5(3):243.

Manana PN, Kuonza L, Musekiwa A, Mpangane HD, Koekemoer LL. Knowledge, attitudes, and practices on malaria transmission in Mamfene, KwaZulu-Natal Province, South Africa 2015. BMC Public Health. 2018;18(1):41.

Karunamoorthi K, Kumera A. Knowledge and health-seeking behavior for malaria among the local inhabitants in an endemic area of Ethiopia: implications for control. Health. 2010;2(6):575–81.

Deressa W, Ali A, Enquoselassie F. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice About Malaria, the Mosquito and Antimalarial Drugs in a Rural Community. Ethiop J Health Dev. 2004;17(2):99–104.

Awuah RB, Asante PY, Sakyi L, Biney AAE, Kushitor MK, Agyei F, et al. Factors associated with treatment-seeking for malaria in urban poor communities in Accra, Ghana. Malar J. 2018;17(1):168.

Idowu OA, Mafiana CF, Luwoye IJ, Adehanloye O. Perceptions and home management practices of malaria in some rural communities in Abeokuta, Nigeria. Travel Med Infect Dis. 2008;6(4):210–4.

Ndyomugyenyi R, Magnussen P, Clarke S. Malaria treatment-seeking behavior and drug prescription practices in an area of low transmission in Uganda: implications for prevention and control. Trans R Soc Trop Med Hyg. 2007;101(3):209–15.

Ahmed SM, Hossain MA. Knowledge and practice of unqualified and semi-qualified allopathic providers in rural Bangladesh: implications for the HRH problem. Health Policy. 2007;84(2–3):332–43.

Abuya TO, Mutemi W, Karisa B, Ochola SA, Fegan G, Marsh V. Use of over-the-counter malaria medicines in children and adults in three districts in Kenya: implications for private medicine retailer interventions. Malar J. 2007;6:57.

Talipouo A, Ngadjeu CS, Doumbe-Belisse P, Djamouko-Djonkam L, Sonhafouo-Chiana N, Kopya E, et al. Malaria prevention in the city of Yaoundé: knowledge and practices of urban dwellers. Malar J. 2019;18(1):167.

Dhimal M, Aryal KK, Dhimal ML, Gautam I, Singh SP, Bhusal CL, et al. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Regarding Dengue Fever among the Healthy Population of Highland and Lowland Communities in Central Nepal. PLoS One. 2014;9(7): e102028.

Bilal A, Siddiqui A, Mansuri F. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice (KAP) About Malaria Among Inhabitants of a Slum Area of Karachi. Ann Abbasi Shaheed Hosp Karachi Med Dent Coll. 2013;18(2):79–85.

Djoufounna J, Bamou R, Mayi MPA, Kala-Chouakeu NA, Tabue R, Awono-Ambene P, et al. Population knowledge, attitudes, and practices towards malaria prevention in the locality of Makenene, Centre-Cameroon. Malar J. 2022;21(1):234.

Thanabouasy C, Pumpaibool T, Kanchanakhan N. Assessment of Knowledge, Attitude and Practice Regarding Malaria Prevention towards Population in Paksong District Champasack Province, Lao PDR. J Health Res. 2009;23(Suppl):11–5.

Aung PL, Pumpaibool T, Soe TN, Kyaw MP. Knowledge, attitude, and practice levels regarding malaria among people living in the malaria endemic area of Myanmar. J Health Res. 2020;34(1):22–30.

Beyene HB, Telele NF, Mekuria AH. Knowledge, Attitude and Practice on Malaria and Associated Factors Among Residents in Pawe District, North West Ethiopia: A Cross-Sectional Study. Sci J Public Health. 2015;3(3):303-9.

Chirevbu E, Chimbari MJ, Ngwenya B. Knowledge and practices on malaria in Tubu village, in a malaria-endemic area in northern Botswana: implications for interventions. Malar World J. 2013;4(15): 1–8.

Cyril UA, Elizabeth OU, Darlington O, David A, Stephen AE, Goodluck SB, Meshach OI, Jeremy OA, Precious AJ. Malaria Prevalence in Toddlers: A Retrospective Study. J. Adv. Med. Med. Res. [Internet]. 2024 Feb. 1 [cited 2024 May 22];36(1):93-104. Available:

Nwalozie R, Onosakponome OE, Hanson AH, Nyebuchi J. Malaria and HIV Co-infection among COVID-19 Cohort in Selected Healthcare Facilities in Rivers State, Nigeria. J. Adv. Med. Pharm. Sci. [Internet]. 2022 Jul. 28 [cited 2024 May 22];24(6):42-8.


Forero DA, Chaparro PE, Vallejo AF, Benavides Y, Gutiérrez JB, Arévalo-Herrera M, Herrera S. Knowledge, attitudes and practices of malaria in Colombia. Malaria journal. 2014 Dec;13: 1-0.