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Effectiveness Of A Pesticide Protective Behavior Program In Improving And Reducing Neuromuscular Symptoms Among Rice Farmers In Sukhothai Province, Thailand


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47 - 58




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P. Markmee, S. Taneepanichskul & R. S. Chapman


The problem of inappropriate pesticide usage is an important concern for occupational authorities in Thailand. There have been few intervention studies aimed at improving protective behavior and reducing health risk. In this quasiexperimental study, we conducted a pesticide protective behavior intervention program. We assessed the effectiveness of this intervention in improving protective behavior, and reducing neuromuscular symptom prevalence, among 182 rice farmers from December 2011 to June 2012 in Sukhothai province, Thailand. The intervention group comprising 91 rice farmers received a 1-month intervention program. Outcomes were measured before intervention (baseline), and at 1 and 4 months after intervention. The effects of intervention were evaluated with difference-of-difference analysis. The result revealed that all the participants had retention all follow-up time. At baseline, the mean protective behavior score was 50.7 in both the groups. The intervention program improved the protective behavior by a mean score of 8.6 (95%CI 7.4–9.9; p<0.001) one month after the intervention and by a mean score of 6.2 (95%CI 3.9–8.5; p<0.001) 4 months later, and reduced the prevalence of neuromuscular symptoms by 30.3 percent-points (95%CI −42.5 to −18.2; p<0.001) one month after the intervention and by 31.0 percent-points (95%CI −47.4 to −t4.7; p<0.001) 4 months after the intervention. Thus, this program should be considered for implementation to improve the safe use of pesticides in other


pesticides, protective behavior program, rice farmers, neuromuscular symptom, Thailand