265197 Health issues and health seeking behaviour of tribal population in Jharkhand, India

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 : 4:50 PM - 5:10 PM

Nimisha Goel, Dr , IFPS Technical Assistance Project, Futures Group International India Pvt. Ltd., Gurgaon, India
Shuvi Sharma , IFPS Technical Assistance Project, Futures Group International, Gurgaon, India
A. Jayachandran, PhD , Senior Technical Specialist - Research, Monitoring & Evaluation, Futures Group India, Gurgaon, India
Background The IFPS Technical Assistance Project funded by USAID to improve MCH and FP indicators in India through provision of technical assistance to State of Jharkhand, with a total population of 26.9 million of which 26.3% is tribal population and major health indicators poorer than rest of India. A study was designed aimed at assessing the attitude towards sickness among the tribes, their faith, beliefs and health seeking behaviour and availability and utilisation of available health care facilities with focus on RCH services. Methodology Qualitative techniques were used and sample was drawn from four major tribes and one minority tribe. Key informant interviews with local health practitioners, focus group discussions with eligible couples and IDIs with respondents who faced neonatal or maternal death in family, were done. Results Antenatal care, even if accessible, was not generally availed. Deliveries were conducted at home by the traditional birth attendant and institutional care was rarely sought. Awareness of modern contraceptives was healthy but their usage was minimal and permanent methods found least favour. Local herbs, of unknown nature were used for contraception. Although, child care practices also leaned towards tradition, immunization found acceptance, if available. IYCF practices were poor. Referral to modern medicine was quicker in case of sick children as compared to adulthood. The local practitioners and traditional healers were most acknowledged health care providers since they are considered to be part of community. The study helped provide recommendations to the state government to help improve the health status of tribal population.

Learning Areas:
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
•Assess the reproductive and child health attitude of major tribes of Jharkhand, including their faith belief and health seeking behaviour •Identify the health seeking behaviour and utilisation of available health care services. •Develop recommendations to help increase the reach of heath care facilities.

Keywords: Underserved Populations, Health Care Utilization

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a background of Doctorate in Population Sciences from International Institute for Population Sciences, Mumbai, India and over 13 years experience in designing and implementing small and large scale research projects including the National Family Health Survey II. I oversee all Operations Research Studies, engage in data analysis for making projections, program development and policy actions at Futures Group India office.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.