Annals of Tropical Medicine and Public Health
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Year : 2012  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 6  |  Page : 565-568

Assessment of accident risk among elderly in domestic environment: A cross-sectional study in rural south Karnataka, India

Department of Community Medicine, Yenepoya Medical College, Yenepoya University, Deralakatte, Mangalore, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Radha Y Aras
Department of Community Medicine, Yenepoya Medical College, Yenepoya University, Deralakatte, Mangalore - 575 018, Karnataka
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/1755-6783.109267

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Background: Geriatric population is vulnerable to domestic accidents. Safety-related provisions/behavior in domestic environment can reduce the risk of accidents. Aim and Objective: To know the safety practices followed at home by people above 60 years age and to assess few epidemiological factors associated with their risk of domestic accident. Study Design: A community-based cross-sectional study. Materials and Methods: Using Lot Quality Technique, 135 elderly (out of 196; at 7% desired level of accuracy, 95% desired confidence level), willing to participate, were interviewed for their practices towards accident prevention. Observations were made regarding safety provisions within homes. The data was recorded in predesigned, pre-tested, semi-structured proformas, based on Home Safety Checklist Tool. Statistical Analysis Used: SPSS package version 17. Fisher's Exact test applied for statistical significance of factors related to accident risk in domestic environment. Results: Elderly from joint families significantly keep passage of bedroom to bathroom free from obstacles, telephone cords away from walking area and use stool to reach high cupboard (P < 0.0005). In nuclear families, stairway was kept adequately lighted (P < 0.05). Literate elderly put away things back to its place after using, walk in room without obstacles, keep soap reachable during bath, keep stairways in good condition, use doormats to wipe feet (P < 0.05). Habit of not cleaning up spills (85.2%), walking on wet floor (60.7%), and no grab bars in bathrooms (53.3%) were observed. Conclusion: Provision and use of home safety measures/practices with needful awareness and attitude are important to prevent domestic accidents amongst elderly.

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