The indiscriminate use of pesticides in developing countries has impacted negatively on the environment and public health. Despite that informal households in Uganda carry a high pest burden, the safe use and disposal of pesticides is poorly studied. We determined the prevalence and pesticide use practices among the informal households in Mulago, a suburb of Kampala city. A cross-sectional survey was conducted among heads of informal households in Mulago II parish, using a semi-structured interview questionnaire. Out of the 56 households in the parish, twenty 20 household met the inclusion criterion for an informal household. Household heads were interviewed on the pest burden and the practices on safe use and disposal of pesticides. Data was analyzed using SPSSv21 software; the chi-square test was used for Univariate analysis. The mean pest burden per household was 4 ± 0.7 pests: mosquitoes 20 (100%), bedbugs 18 (90%; p < 0.001), rats and houseflies 16 (80%; p = 0.007), and cockroaches 15 (75%; p = 0.025). Most households, 17 (85%, p = 0.002) had used a pesticide within the last 2 weeks. The most commonly used pesticides were synthetic pyrethroid in form of aerosols 18 (90%) or insecticide coils 10 (50%) and organophosphate solutions 15 (75%). Pesticides were applied on walls 15 (75%; p < 0.001) and in open air 12 (60%; p = 0.086). Pesticides were stored in lockable cupboards in 6 (30%; p = 0.645) households. The use of pesticides was associated with having livestock, cost of pesticide and the burden of pest infestation. Informal households in Mulago parish have a high pest burden and usage of pesticides. The use, storage and disposal of pesticides are largely inappropriate. Public health interventions that promote the access to quality and safe use of pesticides at informal households are critical.
Keywords: Prevalence, Pesticide Use, determinants of pesticide, Uganda.
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