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Assessment of Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices Concerning Travel Health among Hajj Pilgrims (1439 H- 2018 G) at Prince Mohammad bin Abdulaziz International Airport in AL-Madina, Saudi Arabia

Eman Elsayed Abd-Ellatif, Lamya Alhomaydan, Lujain Al-Assaf, Lamees AlGhamdi, Alwaleed Alharbi, Omar Audah Albeladi, Asmaa Alqusibri, Shady Abd El Rahman and Sami Saeed Almudarra

Global Journal of Health Science, 2021, vol. 13, issue 12, 39

Abstract: AIM- The Hajj pilgrimage, the world's largest annual mass gathering, is held in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). The Saudi Arabian Ministry of Health (MoH) issues entry visa requirements and recommendations for Hajj pilgrims visiting the country. Vaccinations, health checks, and specific immunizations are all recommended either at or before entering KSA. We assessed Hajj pilgrims’ knowledge, attitude and practices regarding preventive, curative, hygienic and health promoting measures. SUBJECTS AND METHODS- We administered a questionnaire to a cross-section of Hajj pilgrims(2018 G)traveling through Prince Mohammad bin Abdulaziz International Airport in Al-Madina, KSA. Variables collected included demographics, Hajj health preparations, and knowledge and attitudes towards travel-related health behaviors. RESULTS- Of 101 respondents, 20% were Saudi and 64%were male. Regarding travel profile, 75% were attending hajj for the first time. About half (52%) stayed in KSA for more than 2 weeks. Knowledge regarding travel heath of respondents was high- 82% scored as excellent and 11% scored as good. Positive attitude toward travel medicine was reported by 60% of participants; 56% of them sought pre-travel advice. Regarding health protection behaviors, 79%reported using protective measures against respiratory infections, 70%for insects, 95%for food and waterborne Diseases, 99%against heat-related conditions and 100%for injuries. CONCLUSION- Despite the health criteria for obtaining Hajj visas and the documented health risks associated with attending Hajj, we discovered that less than half of participants received pre-travel advice. To ensure that Hajj pilgrims have a secure and healthy experience in the Kingdom, we recognized the need for continued education and promotion of health preventive measures. This research could be used to help countries establish Hajj health systems, which would be immensely helpful and would go a long way toward reducing Hajj mortality and morbidity, as well as associated burdens.

Date: 2021
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