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Year : 2022  |  Volume : 18  |  Issue : 4  |  Page : 201-207

Morbidity pattern and health-seeking behavior among the elderly residing in slums of Eastern Odisha: A cross-sectional study

1 Department of Community Medicine, SCB Medical College, Cuttack, Odisha, India
2 Department of Community Medicine, IMS and SUM Hospital, SOA University, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
3 Department of Community Medicine, SLN Medical College, Koraput, Odisha, India
4 Department of Community Medicine, FM Medical College, Balasore, Odisha, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Tapas Ranjan Behera
Department of Community Medicine, FM Medical College, Balasore, Odisha
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jiag.jiag_48_22

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Introduction: Of the total population, elderly people comprised of 8.14% in India where in India or globally. Main challenges faced by the elderly in our country are feminization, ruralisation, migration, and an increasing number of 80-plus adults. This sudden change of environment or being left stranded alone unattended or being dependent on children for their necessities is a major cause of mental illnesses. Objectives: To study the socio-demographic profile, find out the different morbidities and assess the health-seeking behaviour of the study subjects. Materials and Methods: A community-based cross-sectional study was conducted in the field practice area of urban health and training center using the simple random sampling method. Results: The mean age of study subjects was 67.58 ± 6.53 years. Majority of participants, i.e., 308 (73.0%) were young old. 207 (49.1%) were illiterate, 272 (64.5%) unemployed 272 (64.5%) and 224 (53.1%) were living with their children, i.e., 224 (53.1%). Inappropriate health-seeking behavior was significantly associated with under-weight (P < 0.001) which accounted for 2/3rd of participants. Severe depression was observed among 59.5% participants. Females showed a higher proportion of myalgia (5.7%), whereas males showed preponderance of upper respiratory tract diseases (19.2%). The prevalence of inappropriate health-seeking behavior was higher in females (65.1%). The proportion of the elderly with poor health-seeking behavior was found to be 50.4%. Conclusion: Morbidity among the elderly is very high and health-seeking behavior is very poor. Hence, strong efforts are needed to provide them holistic care. Hence, this study was conducted to threw some light on health status of the elderly, their morbidity pattern and health-seeking behavior. It will help the policy-makers to prepare the intervention strategies at the community level.

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