Insecticide-treated bednets (ITNs) are a mainstay of malaria prevention, yet poor adherence poses a major barrier to effective prevention. Self-reports of bednet use suffer from recall and social desirability biases. We have designed a device that electronically records ITN usage longitudinally. SmartNet consists of circuits made from a conductive fabric interwoven into the sides and top of a rectangular ITN. Digital sampling of the state of these circuits allows for determining whether the SmartNet is deployed for use or folded up. We conducted a study among pregnant women and women with children <5 years in Uganda to determine attitudes about objective bednet monitoring and SmartNet. Fifty women were interviewed with an average age of 27 years and 2.3 children. Twenty-two percent were pregnant. Ninety-five percent had used a bednet and 90% reported having a bednet at home. After displaying a SmartNet, 92% thought it would be easy to use and 100% expressed interest in using SmartNet. Concerns about SmartNet included washing the net, worries about being monitored while asleep, and worries about users removing the device components. Objective monitoring of ITN use appears to be acceptable among women in rural Uganda, setting the stage for further SmartNet field testing.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Infectious Diseases