Training medical students [letter]

W. R. Brieger, J. Ramakrishna

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Nigerian 4th year medical students from University of Ibadan spend 8 weeks training in primary health care and public health in the rural Ibarapa Community Health Programme in Oyo State, with ORT as part of the training. Their course of study there includes epidemiological projects, collecting data on diarrhea prevalence, cultural and behavioral practices, assessment and treating children with diarrhea, and teaching ORT to the community. Students worked on the ORT unit on a rotating basis, preparing ORS, monitoring children and talking to mothers. They learned that most mothers recognized diarrhea symptoms, 2/3 had heard about ORS, but less than 1/5 considered it a first step in managing diarrhea. Most would eliminate beans from the child's diet, substituting bland maize porridge. Talking with mothers made them realize that teething children put dirty objects into their mouths and that presence of visible children's feces is associated with diarrhea. Use of soap for hand washing, and availability of clean tap water, rather than well water, decreased incidence of diarrhea. After their training, medical students knew how to prepare ORS correctly, and understand its efficacy. This should increase the acceptance by the medical professionals of ORT as a desirable part of diarrhea control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages1
JournalDialogue on diarrhoea
Issue number30
StatePublished - Sep 1 1987
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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