Conceptualizing the COVID-19 Pandemic: Perspectives of Pregnant and Lactating Women, Male Community Members, and Health Workers in Kenya

Alicia M. Paul, Clarice Lee, Berhaun Fesshaye, Rachel Gur-Arie, Eleonor Zavala, Prachi Singh, Ruth A. Karron, Rupali J. Limaye

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations

Abstract

Pregnant women are at greater risk of adverse outcomes from SARS-CoV-2 infection. There are several factors which can influence the ways in which pregnant women perceive COVID-19 disease and behaviorally respond to the pandemic. This study seeks to understand how three key audiences-pregnant and lactating women (PLW), male community members, and health workers-in Kenya conceptualize COVID-19 to better understand determinants of COVID-19 related behaviors. This study used qualitative methods to conduct 84 in-depth interviews in three counties in Kenya. Data were analyzed using a grounded theory approach. Emerging themes were organized based on common behavioral constructs thought to influence COVID-19 related behaviors and included myths, risk perception, economic implications, stigma, and self-efficacy. Results suggest that risk perception and behavioral attitudes substantially influence the experiences of PLW, male community members, and health workers in Kenya during the COVID-19 pandemic. Public health prevention and communication responses targeting these groups should address potential barriers to preventive health behaviors, such as the spread of misinformation, financial constraints, and fear of social ostracization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10784
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Volume19
Issue number17
DOIs
StatePublished - 30 Aug 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • COVID-19
  • health behavior
  • Kenya
  • maternal health
  • pregnancy
  • qualitative

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pollution
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis

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