Food safety knowledge and practice among pregnant women: a cross sectional study in Ghana

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Background: Foodborne disease is a growing public health concern worldwide, especially among vulnerable populations. Improved understanding of food safety practices is fundamental to addressing the phenomenon. This study aimed to assess the socio-demographic factors influencing knowledge and practice of food safety among pregnant women in Ghana.

Design and Methods:
 This is a cross-sectional study. Self-administered questionnaires were distributed in person to participants during data collection. Data was entered and analysed in Epi Data version 3.1 and Stata 12, respectively. Chi square test and Fischer’s exact test were used to determine association between independent variables and outcome variables (knowledge and practice). Binary logistic regression was used to test the strength of the association between independent and outcome variables at 95% confident interval. A p-value of 0.05 or less was considered significant.

 Findings were: about 87.06% of the respondents had satisfactory knowledge on food safety; approximately 58.2% of respondents knew how to prevent foodborne disease but about 51.18% had unsatisfactory practice about food safety; about 28.2% of participants had experienced foodborne disease before in the past 6 months. Also, employment status and period of pregnancy were found to have significant influence on food safety knowledge whereas educational level and employment status also had significant influence on food safety practice.

Improved understanding about food safety will not necessarily lead to high food safety practices. In the quest to effectively prevent foodborne disease, we recommend an increase in awareness creation regarding foodborne disease and its associated socio-demographic risk factors like employment status, period of pregnancy and educational level.


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