The incidence of pediatric diarrhea in countries neighboring Myanmar is high (>9%). No national data exist in Myanmar, however hospital treatment data indicate that diarrhea is a major cause of morbidity.
Objective: This study seeks to determine diarrhea incidence among children in rural Myanmar and document health-seeking behavior and treatment costs.
Methods: We surveyed 2033 caregivers in households with under-five children, in 104 randomly selected villages in rural Myanmar.
Findings: The incidence of diarrhea in the 2 weeks prior to the survey was 4.9%. Home treatment was common (50.6%); among those who consulted a professional 35.6% went to government clinics, 28.8% to private clinics and 28.0% to a community health worker. The cost of treatment was highest ($15) at government clinics and lowest ($1.3) for self-treatment at home.
Conclusion: Pediatric diarrhea is an important cause of morbidity in rural Myanmar. Self-treatment and treatment by private providers is common.