Introduction: malaria is the commonest cause of morbidity and mortality among displaced populations especially children in endemic countries. Nigeria, an endemic country, has had increase in internally displaced persons (IDP) due to insurgency. utilization of long-lasting insecticidal nets (LLIN) is a key strategy employed to achieve global targets of malaria elimination and its effectiveness is determined by utilization, coverage and maintenance. We determined the coverage and utilization of LLIN among children aged 6-59 months at IDP camps and its predictors.
Methods: a cross-sectional study was conducted among children aged 6-59 months at the three IDP camps in Abuja. We collected data on socio-demographic characteristics, LLIN ownership and utilization using computer-aided interview, complemented by direct observation of nets. We defined universal LLIN coverage as the proportion of households with one LLIN to two persons and utilization as an eligible child sleeping under the LLIN the night preceding the survey. Bivariate analysis was done at p < 0.25 and logistic regression at 5% level of significance.
Results: overall, 393 children were enrolled with mean age of 33.3 ± 17.4 months, 51.6% were female. Household LLIN ownership was 76.7.5%, universal coverage 11.2% and utilization 89.7%. Independent predictors of LLIN utilization were LLIN hung at sleeping area (adjusted OR: 99.9, CI: 22.7 – 438.8) and type of camp site (adjusted OR: 8.2, CI: 2.5 – 27.4).
Conclusion: LLIN utilization was high in these IDP camps despite low coverage. LLIN distribution and hanging campaigns are recommended to reduce malaria transmission in the IDP camps.