Evaluation of an intervention program for head lice infestation in school children

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Abstract

In order to investigate the point prevalence rate of pediculosis capitis (human head lice) among children in the southern region of Israel, 1431 elementary school children (6 to 15 years old), representing rural and urban environments, “were examined and characterized by sociodemographic variables. An intervention program was initiated immediately after the first examination, which included ”health education“ for children and parents and free medicated shampoo (with pediculocides) provided for each child detected as ”positive.“ The intervention program was evaluated by a second examination performed on the same population after an interval of 1 month. Fifty-five percent of the children (793 of 1431) were found to be infested with one of the markers of head lice, with the highest rate in kibbutz children (80%) and the lowest rate (37%) among children who live in an urban neighborhood of high socioeconomic status. Analysis of various characteristics (related to the children screened in this study) revealed that crowding was the main factor contributing to the variation in the rates of infestation. Evaluation of the intervention program revealed a significant success in reducing head lice infestation that was not influenced by variation in socioeconomic status or place of residence.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)176-179
Number of pages4
JournalPediatric Infectious Disease Journal
Volume7
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 1988

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