Access to improved sanitation is fundamental for the prevention of diarrhoea and other diseases. However, for a sanitation facility to be safe, its cleanliness must be assured. The aim of the present study was, first, to assess how cleaning behaviour, household characteristics and infrastructural factors influenced latrine cleanliness and, second, to assess which psychological factors influenced cleaning behaviour. In a study in rural Burundi, 762 standardised household interviews with the primary household caregiver were carried out to assess habitual cleaning behaviour and psychological factors according to behaviour change models. In addition, the characteristics and cleanliness of the latrine were observed, and two multiple linear regressions were performed to analyse predictors of latrine cleanliness and of cleaning behaviour. Latrine cleanliness was determined by cleaning behaviour, the possibility of locking the door, the height of the superstructure, the material of the superstructure and the availability of an even slab. The number of households or people sharing the latrine was not influential. Commitment to cleaning, satisfaction with the cleanliness of the latrine and self-efficacy determined habitual cleaning behaviour. Interventions focussing on commitment, self-efficacy and satisfaction with a clean latrine like public commitment or guided practice interventions are recommended to promote cleaning behaviour.

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