Workpackage 3. Identifying factors affecting LLIN access and use and malaria treatment strategies

The overall aim of the WP3 component of the MIRA study is to describe the health system and community factors that are likely to influence the effectiveness of the current malaria prevention and treatment strategies in the Cascades region of Burkina Faso.

Specifically, we are investigating the patterns of ITN use and access to treatment for malaria in communities in rural Burkina Faso, identifying the factors influencing these behaviours (including health system factors) and determining the risk of parasite infection in children and adults in relation to treatment seeking behavior and ITN use. Three sub-studies, using three distinct strategies are being used to collect data. The first sub-study is an ethnography of ITN use; the second is a mixed methods (qualitative and quantitative) study of the factors influencing the effective diagnosis and treatment of malaria, and examining the generalizability of the findings emerging from the ethnographic study on the determinants of use of ITNs; and the third is cross-sectional survey to determine the risk of parasite infection in children and adults in relation to their treatment seeking behaviour and ITN use. Data from all three components will be triangulated to provide a holistic understanding of the structural, system and human behavior factors associated with the persistence of the malaria burden in this setting.