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Self-medication is very common especially in developing countries and is documented to be associated with many health risks including antibiotic resistance. Antibiotic resistance is shrinking the range of effective antibiotics and is currently listed as a global health problem. This study investigated the perceptions of self-medication with antimicrobials (SMWA) after community mobilization intervention among the households in Nyalenda B, an informal settlement, within Kisumu County, Kenya. This enabled the study to establish the magnitude of SMWA and the perceptions that persist given such intervention within the region. Data was collected through structured questionnaires administered to 380 households. Focus group discussions (FGDs) were also facilitated and targeted purposively-selected 30 CHVs. Descriptive and binary logistic regression analyses were used to determine the association between socio-demographic characteristics and the perceptions influencing SMWA. The study established that 316 households had used antimicrobials of which 20.9% were self-medicating with antimicrobials. Age (OR=0.647, 95% CI=0.431, 0.973, P=0.037) is significantly related to SMWA, use of NHIF for outpatient services (OR=1.772, 95% CI=0.652, 2.887, P=0.133) and use of Universal Healthcare Services (OR=1.165, 95% CI=0.922, 1.472, P=0.201) may have contributed to SMWA reduction but not significantly as compared to other socio-demographic factors. Likewise, sources of information or advice on self-medication (OR=0.732, 95% CI=0.613, 0.873, P=0.001) and illness or symptoms of illness (OR=1.324, 95% CI=1.129, 1.554, P=0.001) may significantly influence SMWA as compared to other SMWA perceptions. Community mobilization using empowerment as a strategy and implemented through participatory learning and action is a successful method for reduction of SMWA level and development of SMWA perceptions with an experiential value especially when strengthened with structural modification. SMWA is a serious problem in developing countries and so such intervention should be prolonged and continuous to offer sustained changes in public perception and attitudes towards the misuse of antimicrobials.
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