Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices Associated with Brucellosis in Livestock Owners in Jordan

Musallam, I I and Abo-Shehada, M N and Guitian, J (2015) Knowledge, Attitudes, and Practices Associated with Brucellosis in Livestock Owners in Jordan. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF TROPICAL MEDICINE AND HYGIENE, 93 (6). pp. 1148-1155.

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Abstract

We evaluated livestock owners' knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding brucellosis in Jordan. A questionnaire was administered and biological samples were examined to verify the serological status of animals. Seroprevalence estimates indicated that 18.1% (95% CI: 11–25.3) of cattle herds and 34.3% (95% CI: 28.4–40.4) of small ruminant flocks were seropositive. The results showed that 100% of the interviewed livestock keepers were aware of brucellosis: 87% indicated a high risk of infection if unpasteurized milk is consumed and 75% indicated a high risk if unpasteurized dairy products are consumed. Awareness of the risk of infection through direct contact with fetal membranes or via physical contact with infected livestock is considerably lower, 19% and 13%, respectively. These knowledge gaps manifest in a high frequency of high-risk practices such as assisting in animal parturition (62%), disposing aborted fetuses without protective gloves (71.2%) or masks (65%), and not boiling milk before preparation of dairy products (60%). When brucellosis is suspected, basic hygiene practices are often disregarded and suspect animals are freely traded. Public health education should be enhanced as the disease is likely to remain endemic in the ruminant reservoir as long as a suitable compensation program is not established and trust on available vaccines is regained.