The Effect Of Communicable Diseases Among Children

Project and Seminar Material for Biology

The Effect Of Communicable Diseases Among Children


This study Focused on the effect of communicable diseases among children in Enugu North LGA. Communicable diseases are very common among poor resident. Communicable diseases could be contacted and have effects in primary school pupils, which may include deformity and poor academic performance. Immunization can be used to control the spread of communicable diseases among school pupils. One hundred respondents were used as sample study. Research questions were formulated to analyze the results. Results showed that lack of parental care, lack of health education and overcrowding of pupils in class lead to spread of communicable diseases. Therefore, it is recommended that since majority of rural dwellers are not learned, most do not recognize the need to keep their surroundings clean, it therefore becomes important for the Government through the mass media embark on massive orientation or sensitization of those individuals. This will help to mobilize them for personal and environmental hygiene. To mention but a few.

Table of Content

  • Title Page
  • Certification
  • Dedication
  • Acknowledgement
  • Table of Content
  • List of Tables
  • Abstract

Chapter One:


  • 1.1 Background of the Study
  • 1.2 Statement of the Problem
  • 1.3 Objective of the Study
  • 1.4 Research Questions
  • 1.5 Significance of the Study
  • 1.6 Scope of the Study
  • 1.7 Limitation of the Study
  • 1.8 Definition of Terms
  • 1.9 Organization of the Study

Chapter Two:

Review of Literature

  • 2.1 Conceptual Framework
  • 2.2 Theoretical Framework
  • 2.3 Empirical Review

Chapter Three:

Research Methodology

  • 3.1 Research Design
  • 3.2 Population of the Study
  • 3.3 Sample Size Determination
  • 3.4 Sample Size Selection Technique and Procedure
  • 3.5 Research Instrument and Administration
  • 3.6 Method of Data Collection
  • 3.7 Method of Data Analysis
  • 3.8 Validity of the Study
  • 3.9 Reliability of the Study
  • 3.10 Ethical Consideration

Chapter Four:

Data Presentation and Analysis

  • 4.1 Data Presentation
  • 4.2 Analysis of Data
  • 4.3 Answering Research Questions

Chapter Five:

Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

  • 5.1 Summary
  • 5.2 Conclusion
  • 5.3 Recommendation
  • References

Chapter One


1.1 Background of the Study

Communicable diseases are as old as man and they constitute a great menace to human beings in every part of the world. They are one of the greatest problems facing children today. The diseases are silent killers unlike accident that kills instantly. Man has been trying to get rid of these diseases, for years but efforts made have proved partially abortive. Specifically, pre-school children (0-5 years old) are prone to communicable diseases because of their close interaction with one another, their non-discriminatory behaviours and also their low immunity power. A disease that is transmitted through direct contact with an infected individual or indirectly through a vector. Also called contagious disease.

Communicable disease is often called contagious or infectious disease. Anderson (2000) defined a communicable disease as a disease that can be transmitted from one person to another or from lower animal to higher animal (man). He attributed the cause of these diseases to pathogenic microorganisms. Brain (2007) also noted that communicable disease are infectious diseases that can be passed from person to another or from an animal to a person.

It is generally believed that nature harbours many microorganism which are very difficult to see with mere naked eyes except with the use of highly powerful microscopic lens. Those microorganisms which harm the human body are called pathogens. Udoh, Fawole, Ajala, Okafo & Nwana (2007) confirmed that pathogens that harm the body are popularly known as germs. These invade the tissues of the human host where they produce the condition called disease. These germs/pathogens (that is virus, bacteria, protozoan and metazoan) are mostly found in dirty places where the temperature and atmosphere support their existence.

Olaoye (2008) classified communicable diseases into four namely water borne disease, air borne diseases, insect borne and other diseases that are transmitted by contacts and arthropods. Brain (2007) stated that the best way of classifying communicable diseases is by their spread, and these are; air borne or droplet infections; faecal borne or gastro-intestina infections; transmission from animal, from insects and by contacts. Barbara and Bauirer (2007) identified three ways of transmitting communicable diseases as; transmission by contact, by vector and by air.
Altekruse et al. (2001) defined a communicable disease as an illness that arises from transmission of an infectious agent or its toxic product from an infected person, animal or reservoir to a susceptible host, either directly or indirectly through an intermediate plant or animal host, vector, or environment. It can also be defined as an illness due to a specific infectious agent or its toxic products that arises through transmission of that agent or its products from an infected person, animal, or inanimate reservoir to a susceptible host. Transmission may be direct from person to person, or indirect through an intermediate plant or animal host, vector, or the inanimate environment.

The potential for infectious disease to disturb or destroy human life still exists today, especially in low-income countries, but can also pose serious challenges in the high-income countries. This threat may increase as infectious diseases evolve and escape current human-developed control mechanisms. The spread of the plague throughout Europe and Asia in the fourteenth century caused death and social destruction to an estimated one-third to half of the population of Europe, and is long embedded in the folk culture of the western world (Huntingdon 2002). The 1918–1919 Spanish (swine) influenza pandemic may have affected one-third of the world’s population; it was very severe and carried a case fatality rate of over 2.5 percent, particularly hitting young adults, resulting in between 50 and possibly as high as 100 million deaths, and killing more young men than died in World War I (Tautenberger, 2006).

Pandemics have caused huge repeated communicable disease devastation, such as smallpox, tuberculosis, syphilis, measles, cholera, and influenza, and have demonstrated infectious diseases’ explosive potential and epidemic character. Others of these illnesses have been controlled, and some may be eradicated as public health issues; nonetheless, new or recurring communicable diseases continue to appear. The spread of AIDS since the 1980s, ongoing cholera epidemics in Asia, Africa, and South America, diphtheria in the former Soviet Union in the 1990s, measles in Western Europe in 2010–2012, and diphtheria and pertussis in many western countries in 2011–2013 all serve as reminders of why communicable disease control remains one of public health’s primary responsibilities (Huntingdon 2002).

A number of discoveries in the 19th century were important events for the understanding of communicable diseases. For example, the link between contaminated water and cholera was discovered by John Snow in 1854; the importance of hygienic handwashing before attending delivery of a baby was noted by Dr. Semmelweis in 1845; and the discovery that microorganisms (very small organisms only visible under a microscope) cause disease was made by Louis Pasteur around this time.

Studies have shown that communicable diseases can be effectively controlled through personal and environmental hygiene. Although hygiene and infection are vital factors in environmental health, it is also good to be aware of emerging issues such as global warming and the links between medical conditions such as cardio-vascular disease and our environment and lifestyles. Our environment is everything that surrounds us. It includes all the external influences and conditions that can affect our health, life and growth. These influences are constantly changing and the effects on our health may not be easily foreseen (Jacob 1998).

1.2 Statement of the Problem

Home environment contribute to communicable diseases among school children. In the Africa culture the value of education is highly perfect, be it formal. If one take the formal education as a case study, the home or environment contribute a lot to the hygienic system of the child both of home and in school. As this could prevent some communicable disease that could have affected the pupils because the sound foundation for future prevention of communicable diseases start from home. lack of care at home, some time cause unhealthy rivalry among pupils as it has a negative effect on the health of the child both of home school and its environment.

1.3 Purpose of the Study

The purpose of this study is to find out the cause and effects of communicable diseases among children in Enugu North LGA. specifically, the study sought to:

  1. Determine the causes of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA.
  2. Ascertain the effect of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA.
  3. Determine ways to address the issues of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA.
  4. Determine effect of poverty of parents to the spread of communicable diseases among children.

1.4 Research Questions

The researcher in trying to substantiate the result of his study deducted the following research questions which are:

  1. Does lack of parental care lead to spread of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA?
  2. Does lack of health education lead to spread of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA?
  3. Can overcrowding of pupils in classrooms lead to the incidence of communicable disease among children in Enugu North LGA?
  4. Does poverty of parents lead to spread of communicable diseases among children?

1.5 Significance of the Study

In carrying out the study, the researcher hoped that it would be of great benefit to the public in general and to the educational system in particular. It would help educate parents on how to handle their environment and the health of their children. This study will help school management in preventing the spread of communicable disease in school and how to help children suffering from such problems. Moreover it is hoped that it would help teachers to know how to handle such children when they experience difficulties.

1.6 Scope of the Study

This study is restricted to pupils from Enugu North LGA of Enugu State. it is also limited to some six primary schools within the study area. The researcher limited her study to primary schools in Enugu North LGA of Enugu State.

Therefore, only primary six from six primary school located in urban and rural areas of the local government were used for the study. They are as follows:

1.7 Limitations of the Study

Like in every human endeavour, the researchers encountered slight constraints while carrying out the study. The significant constraint was the scanty literature on the subject owing to the nature of the discourse thus the researcher incurred more financial expenses and much time was required in sourcing for the relevant materials, literature, or information and in the process of data collection, which is why the researcher resorted to a limited choice of sample size. Additionally, the researcher will simultaneously engage in this study with other academic work. More so, the choice of the sample size was limited as few respondent were selected to answer the research instrument hence cannot be generalize to other secondary schools. However, despite the constraint encountered during the research, all factors were downplayed in other to give the best and make the research successful.

1.8 Definition of Terms


Constitute a large domain of prokaryotic microorganisms. Typically a few micrometres in length, bacteria have a number of shapes, ranging from sphere to rods and spirals. Bacteria were among the first life forms to appear on earth, and are present in most of its habitats. Bacterial inhabit soil, water, acidic hot springs, radioactive waste, and the deep portions of earth’s crust. Bacteria also live in symbiotic and parasitic relationship with plants and animals. They are also known to have flourished in manned spacecraft.


(of a disease) able to be transmitted from one sufferer to another contagious or infectious.


A disorder of structure or function in a human, animal, or plant, especially one that produces specific symptoms or that affects a specific location and is not simply a direct result of physical injury. A disease is a particular abnormal, pathological condition that affects part or all of an organism. It is often construed as a medical condition associated with specific symptoms and signs. It may be caused by factors originally from an external source, such as infectious disease, or it may be caused by internal dysfunctions, such as autoimmune diseases. In humans, “disease” is often used more broadly to refer to any condition that causes pain, dysfunction, distress, social problems, or death to the person afflicted, or similar problems for t hose in contact with the person.


In epidemiology, an infections is said to be endemic in a population when that infection is maintained in the population without the need for external inputs. For example, chickenpox is endemic (steady state) in the UK, but malaria is not. Every year, there are a few cases of malaria acquired in the UK, but these do not lead to sustained transmission in the population due to the lack of a suitable vector.


A hazard is a situation that poses a level of threat to life, health, property, or environment. Most hazards are dormant or potential, with only a theoretical risk of harm, however, once a hazard becomes “active”, it can create an emergency situation. A hazardous situation that has come to pass is called an incident. Hazard and possibility interact together to create risk.


Appearing or happening at irregular intervals in time, occasional, sporadic renewals of enthusiasms. Appearing in scattered or isolated instances, as a disease, isolated as a single instance of something, being or occurring apart from others occurring singly or widely apart in locality; the sporadic growth of plants.

1.10 Organization of the Study

The study is categorized into five chapters. The first chapter presents the background of the study, statement of the problem, objective of the study, research questions and hypothesis, the significance of the study, scope/limitations of the study, and definition of terms. The chapter two covers the review of literature with emphasis on conceptual framework, theoretical framework, and empirical review. Likewise, the chapter three which is the research methodology, specifically covers the research design, population of the study, sample size determination, sample size, and selection technique and procedure, research instrument and administration, method of data collection, method of data analysis, validity and reliability of the study, and ethical consideration. The second to last chapter being the chapter four presents the data presentation and analysis, while the last chapter(chapter five) contains the summary, conclusion and recommendation.

Chapter Five

Conclusion and Recommendations

5.1 Introduction

This chapter summarizes the findings on the effect of communicable diseases among children, Enugu State as case study. The chapter consists of summary of the study, conclusions, and recommendations.

5.2 Conclusion

The WHO (2011a) and other studies (Goldstein et al., 2005; Schneider et al., 2009) have demonstrated the influence of poverty on CD prevalence and effect. The urban poor are disproportionately affected by CDs. Socio-economic development and urbanisation and its accompanied behavioural changes are the drivers of the epidemiological transition (Agyei-Mensah and de-Graft Aikins, 2010; Allender and Lacey, 2010; Allender et al, 2011; Ekpenyong and Akpan, 2013; Ford and Caspersen, 2012). Rapid urbanisation and economic development increase the populations exposure to the modifiable risk factors associated with CDs.

Communicable diseases effect is not limited only to affluent populations as the WHO reported a link between poverty and CD (WHO, 2011a). The results of this thesis also confirm that the urban poor are not exempted from the effect of CDs. About one in five of the 806 parentss interviewed had at least a member diagnosed with at least one CD condition. The odds of underestimation of the prevalence rate among the study population cannot be ignored due to diagnosis and disclosure of disease status to other childrens. One out of every three (33%) persons ever diagnosed with CD did not treat, medicate or receive any therapy for the condition during the least two weeks preceding the survey. This phenomenon of treatment of chronic diseases can be attributed partly to high level of poverty and high cost of healthcare.

The results of this thesis also point that the high healthcare cost result in noncompliance to medication and treatment among persons living with CDs, and is consistent with the findings of other studies (Asenso-Okyere et al.,,1998; AsensoOkyere and Dzatorb, 1997; Buabeng et al., 2004; de-Graft Aikins, 2005). The lack of medical options and social protection systems for the urban poor presents significant health effect. Poverty therefore is a major determinant of adherence to management and treatment regime of CDs. The relatively high cost of healthcare results in catastrophic healthcare expenditure and parents impoverishment.

5.3 Recommendations

Drawing on the results of this thesis, four broad recommendations are made. These are in the areas of collaboration between national and local agencies to provide social protection for the most vulnerable population in the society. Also, the incorporation of CD risk, prevalence and effect into national surveys to provide the requisite data needed to study the effect of CD at the national level. There is also the need for policy reforms in the national health insurance scheme to account for the epidemiological transition-taking place in the country, and further studies to build on the findings of this study.

Collaboration of agencies for social protection schemes

Collaboration of national and local agencies in the country to provide social protection to the most vulnerable in the society is recommended. Results from this study indicated that except for church, none of the persons living with CD reported belonging to any social, self-help group or association. This provides an avenue for stakeholders in the health, economic, and development sectors to collaborate to provide the needed ground for the creation and enrolment of infected persons in social and self-help groups. This will provide needed social protection to the vulnerable people living with CD. Lack of social security and low employment among the study population, particularly persons living with CD put poor parentss at higher risk of impoverishment. Collaboration to provide social protection to the vulnerable in the society could be through the making of available and accessible governmental supports interventions such as the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP) to poor parentss with persons living with CDs.

Communicable disease indicators in national surveys

There are still research gaps in quantifying the prevalence and effect of CDs in Nigeria. Understanding the effect of chronic disease at the micro level is pivotal in any effective health policy intervention. However, there are limited researches in this area to provide in-depth understanding of the significant challenges of CDs on parentss. Sub-Saharan Africa is noted to lack reliable data on causes of disease and the overall effect (Unwin et al., 2001).

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