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Neglected Rural Public Health Issue: The Case of Intestinal Roundworms

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China & World Economy, Vol. 21, page(s): 25-43

2013

china world economy

Despite increasing institutional and financial support, certain public health issues are still neglected by the Chinese Government. The present paper examines the soil-transmitted helminth (STH) infection and reinfection rates by conducting a survey on 1724 children in Guizhou Province, China. Our results indicate that 37.5 percent of children had been infected with one or more of the three types of tested STH. However, only 50.4 percent of children reported having taken deworming medicine during the 18-month period before the survey. Of those who reported being dewormed, 34.6 percent tested positive for STH infections. Poverty and number of siblings are significantly and positively correlated with infection and reinfection, and parental education is significantly and negatively correlated with infection and reinfection. Given the ineffectiveness of treatment in these areas to date, for anthelminthic campaigns to actually succeed, China must pay more attention to locallevel incentives to improve children’s health.

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