Background: Insecticide-treated bed nets are essential tools to prevent malaria in endemic regions, however, increasing trends in bed net related burns in Kampala, Uganda are concerning.
Methods: Data were collected from burns unit admission records at Mulago National Referral Hospital in Kampala, Uganda for the years 2008-2011 inclusive. Retrospective analyses on the characteristics of patients admitted with bed net related burns within this period were conducted.
Results: A total of 45 patients were admitted to the burns unit with bed net related burns during the study period. Most burns occurred among individuals who were 0-1 years old (33.3%) and 26-35 years old (24.2%) and the majority were male (71%). Bed net related burns at Mulago Hospital are severe, as evidenced by the fact that 15 of 45 patients died (crude mortality rate=33%) and that 26 patients (57.8%) had total body surface area burn percentages that were greater than 20%. The average length of stay in hospital for patients with bed net related burns was 30.4 days.
Conclusion: Organizations responsible for malaria prevention should consider incorporating fire and burn prevention awareness, strategies and training into their bed net distribution programs.
Keywords: Bed net related burns; Epidemiology; Prevention; Uganda.
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