Journal article

Effect of swimming pools on antibiotic use and clinic attendance for infections in two Aboriginal communities in Western Australia

Health social services Recreation Aboriginal Australians Australia Western Australia

This study examines whether the use of swimming pools can reduce the high prevalence of infections among children in remote Aboriginal communities. The communities of Jigalong and Mugarinya, in Western Australia, had public swimming pools installed in 2000, which were managed by the Royal Life Saving Society with regard to water testing and managing the risks of the spread of infection. The authors analysed the medical records of children and adolescents between 1998 and 2005, for clinic attendance rates for skin, middle-ear and respiratory tract infections and trauma, and for prescription rates for antibiotics. This article discusses the findings, methodology, and public health implications of the study, which found a reduced rate of infections and antibiotic prescriptions associated with the introduction of the swimming pools.

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