, Volume 59, Issue 5, pp 567-571

Socio-biological factors in underfive deaths in a rural area

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Abstract

In 1985–86, 286 underfive deaths occurred among a population of 30,000 in a rural area of Haryana. Two hundred and eighty one were analysed for socio-biological factors related to under five mortallty. Females had a higher mortality. About 2/3 of the deaths were in infants, and 90% in first 3 years. Most of the deaths (94%) occurred in the village itself, 58.4% did not seek any medical care during the terminal illness, 80–90% did not receive even a single dose of BCG, DPT or O.P.V., and 36.7% died in the first attack of illness. Though 68% had at least one episode earlier, 31.0% had been admitted in hospitals for an earlier episode of illness. In 42.8% of deaths, the birth order was IV or above. Deaths in socially and economically disadvantaged cases constituted 77.6%. The triad of diarrhea, ARI and malnutrition claimed 56% deaths. In 93% of the deaths, the mothers were illiterate and 96.4% were house wives. There was a sibling death earlier in the family in 78.3%, and 60.1% deaths were of those living in poor housing conditions. About 50% had radio for communication, 85.8% had bicycle for conveyance, and in 66.9% the family had piped water supply. All these findings have been discussed in the study.