Socio-economic and Environmental Factors Affecting Health in District Bhimber (AJK)
This study evaluates the impact of various socio economic and environmental variables on the incidence of diseases in district Bhimber of Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK). The selected diseases were diarrhoea, dysentery, cholera, typhoid, bronchitis, pneumonia, asthma, and malaria. In this study, we used primary data, collected through questionnaire from 267 randomly selected households. Analysis has been made through applying logistic regression. The results revealed that incidence of water borne diseases decreases with the increase in income, education, use of piped or motor pump water, satisfaction from water quality, drinking water treatment practices, hand wash facility near the toilets, availability of toilets in the houses, and frequency of toilet cleaning. Whereas water source outside the homes, sewerage water drainage in open drains, food storage in open jars/utensils show significant positive relationship with water borne diseases. Similarly, cooking in multipurpose rooms, use of wood, animal dung as cooking fuel, and smoking have significant positive impact on incidence of air borne diseases. Whereas cooking practices in open air, room space, presence of chimney at cooking place, and ventilator also have negative relationship with air borne diseases. Fly door, fly window and preventive measures from mosquitoes other than mosquito net show negative link with the incidence of malaria. While sewerage water drainage in open drains, presence of garbage heaps and stagnant water near a house and water storage in open container have significant positive effect on the incidence of malaria disease. This study suggests that the emphasis be placed upon awareness regarding health, improvement of sanitation conditions, introduction of hygienic practices, modern fuels like Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) and bio-gas for better health.