COVID-19 prevention in a settlement colony in Kolkata

Original Article

Author Details : J Mukhopadhyay*

Volume : 7, Issue : 2, Year : 2020

Article Page : 54-60

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Background: The scourge of ongoing COVID-19 pandemic is a matter of public health concern. COVID-
19 spreads via aerosolised respiratory droplets ejected during coughing, sneezing and even loud speaking.
Transmission through contaminated hand or personal objects is also possible. In absence of explicit antiviral
medicines and vaccine, humans needed to resort to preventive life-style like use of mask, repeated
hand washing, social distancing and hygienic way of coughing-sneezing. Considering a possible upsurge
of COVID-19 in India, it was decided to study the knowledge and awareness on COVID-19 prevention and
its practice among the residents in a settlement colony in Kolkata.
Methods: 277 adult residents of a settlement colony in Kolkata were studied during 2nd-3rd week of March
2020. Approval from local authority and consent of head of the family were obtained. A pretested structured
questionnaire was introduced including demographic attributes and knowledge-awareness-practice (KAP)
traits of COVID-19 prevention. The data obtained was tabulated and statistically analysed.
Result: The community had 380 members including 125 children having sex ratio 948.7 and 1.3 children
per family. All adult members were literate and majority (47.3%) belonged to lower socio-economic group.
Awareness of respondents on COVID-19 was remarkable. More than 93% subjects knew about COVID-
19 illness besides 85% and above about common preventive measures. Around 93-95% subjects knew
the value of hand washing, wearing mask and social distancing. However, there was mixed response
to acceptance of preventive behaviour. While daily bath (100%), avoidance of public spitting (77.6%),
cough hygiene (92.4%) and shunning hand-shake/hugging (92.7%) were followed by higher proportion of
residents; hand washing (55.2%), wearing mask (52.3%) and social distancing (52.3%) got limited no. of
acceptors. Significantly high proportion of matriculates belonging to lower middle socio-economic class
displayed desirable practices of hand washing 2-3 times a day, using mask amid avoiding spitting in public.
Conclusion: Further research is recommended to enrich this effort to explore facts that may play vital role
in COVID-19 prevention in future.

Keywords: COVID-19, Social distancing, Physical contact greetings, Cough hygiene.

How to cite : Mukhopadhyay J , COVID-19 prevention in a settlement colony in Kolkata. J Community Health Manag 2020;7(2):54-60

Copyright © 2020 by author(s) and J Community Health Manag. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (

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