Faculty of Public Health - Andalas University - OCS, 13th IEA SEA Meeting and ICPH - SDev

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Epidemiological determinants of utilization of health care facilities amongst elderly subjects in rural India
Ms. Aakriti Gupta, Ms. Ritika Khandelwal, Prof. Umesh Kapil

Last modified: 2018-08-07


Background: A rise inmorbidity and mortality has been observed due to increase in chronic conditions and disabilitiesamongst elderly subjects in India. Hence, there is a need for adequate utilization of healthcare services amongst elderly subjects. No study has been conducted to assess the epidemiological determinants of utilizationof health care facilities amongst elderly subjects in India. Hence, to fill the gap in the exiting knowledge, the present study was undertaken.

Materials and Methods: A community based cross-sectional study was conducted during the year 2015-2016 in District Nainital, Uttarakhand state, India. The mean age of males was 69·3±7·4 years and of females was 67·97·2 years. A total of 1003 subjects were selected for the study. These subjects were selected from thirty clusters (villages) identified by using population proportional to size sampling methodology. Thirty elderly subjects in the age group of 60 years and above were selected from each cluster by house-to-house visit.

Information on socio demographic profile, body mass index, physical activity and utilization of health care facilities was obtained.


Results: We observed that 71.3% of the elderly subjectsunderutilizedhealth care facilities (visited health care facilities once in a year).

Underutilization of health care facilities were observed to be higher amongst male subjects, subjects aged 80 years and above, illiterates, unemployed, subjects with monthly income of less than Rs. 5500, subjects with irregular physical activity, low functional ability/ high dependency on care givers (Basic Activities of Daily Living score of <100) and underweight subjects (BMI <18.5 kg/m2).


Conclusion: The present study suggests that the existing health care facilities are underutilized amongst the elderly subjects. There is a need to provide knowledge to the elderly population regarding the importance of regular health monitoring. This will help in reducing the overall burden of morbidity and mortality among them.


Keywords: Elderly, Utilisation, Health care facility, India