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   Table of Contents      
ARTICLES
Year : 1985  |  Volume : 33  |  Issue : 5  |  Page : 273-276

Social, economic and behavioral determinants of utilisation of cataract surgery in mobile eye camps


Aravind Eye Hospital & Post-Graduate Institute of Ophthalmology, Madurai, India

Correspondence Address:
Tarachand Das
Arvind Eye Hospital & Post-Graduate Institute of Ophthalmology, Madurai
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


PMID: 3843335

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How to cite this article:
Das T, Venkataswamy. Social, economic and behavioral determinants of utilisation of cataract surgery in mobile eye camps. Indian J Ophthalmol 1985;33:273-6

How to cite this URL:
Das T, Venkataswamy. Social, economic and behavioral determinants of utilisation of cataract surgery in mobile eye camps. Indian J Ophthalmol [serial online] 1985 [cited 2020 Mar 31];33:273-6. Available from: http://www.ijo.in/text.asp?1985/33/5/273/30729

Table 6

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Table 6

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Table 5

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Table 5

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Table 4

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Table 3

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Table 2

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Table 1

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Table 1

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The concept of delivery of eye care in rural population through eye camps or mobile eye hospitals, particularly in eradicating curable blindness caused by cataract is well recognised and forms part of the strategy for the national healthprogramme. With scientific planning, precise organization[1] and good surgical results[1],[3] comparable to that achieved in hospital group of cataract patients surgery through the mobile eye camps is more and more accepted. However, there is no study made in the various social and economic factors associated with the acceptance and adoption of cataract surgery in such eye camps in South India.

In this communication an attempt is made to identify the social, economic and behavioral factors in the uptake and utilisa­tion of cataract surgery in one of the many eye camps conducted by us in the suburbs of a medium sized town in Tamil Nadu and the effective means of reaching the target popula­tion is suggested.


  Materials and methods Top


The camp site in this study was 300 kms. north of Madurai and the main occupation of the people in this locality was weaving. A total of 293 patients, 151 males and 142 females, with an average age of 62.06 years (males 64.87 years, females 59.07 years) and an average monthly income of Rs. 233.58 were operated in this camp. Screening of the patients prior to surgery, the operative procedure and post-operative care were like any other camp conducted by us and is reported previously[2]. The patients were interviewed in the post-operative period by a group of twenty local volunteers after proper briefing and explaining to them in detail the purpose of this work. Each patient was interviewed twice by two separate volunteers to rule out any biased or false answers and the recorded statements of each patient was checked at random by one of us. The relati­ves of the patients were also interviewed to eliminate any false statements.

All the available data were later fed to computer in the hospital and analysed.


  Observations Top


The informations regarding the occupation of the patients, fellow eye status, distance of the nearest doctor, the mode of getting the news of the camp, the willingness to go back to work after surgery with different social and economic correlations are tabulated [Table - 1][Table - 2][Table - 3][Table - 4][Table - 5][Table - 6].

It was found that the fellow eye was operated in 109 patients (37.20%) and 74 of them were operated in the hospital (o7.89%). There was no significant difference in monthly income in the individuals in whom the fellow eye was operated either in the camp or hospital. But only 65 of the 109 patients (59.63%) bad consulted doctor for the fellow eye and there was gross difference in income in group of patients who had consulted the doctor before getting operated in the camp [Table - 4], Significantly the patients who had prior consultation with the doctors, in 78.95% of them the fellow eye was operated in the hospital and the patients who had not consulted before, in 67.40% of them the fellow eye was operated in the camp.


  Discussion Top


From the analysis of the data it was seen that though 143 patients (48.82%) were only 1-2kms. away from the nearest doctor [Table - 3][Table - 4] only 52 patients (17.74%) had actually consulted the doctor about their present eye ailments. In 36.53% of them the fellow eye was already operated and significantly most of them were operated in the hospital out of their own initiative. It was also seen that majority of the patients if operated in a camp are less likely to consult the doctor for the fellow eye problems as shown in [Table - 4]. This is partly because of economic problems as the average monthly income of the groups of patients operated in the camps was found to be significantly lower than the other group of patients operated in the hospital. Perhaps other social and economic barriers identified in an earlier report[4] also play a major role in an individual's decision and initiative to seek medical aid in hospital.

Since proper informations of the camps are of prime importance other than motiva­tional factors in success of rural eye camps, various means are usually used to propagate the news and inform the general public. It was however seen that, as shown in [Table - 5], oral canvassing remains the most effective means of information to reach the target population (56.67%), followed by informations obtained through friends (19.79%) and wall posters (13.31%). Newspapers (9.55%) and radio news (0.68%) are not the effective means as seen in this study, more so as far as radio news is concerned. This might be due to very few people actually reading news­papers regularly and many not owning a radio and even if they do, they do not listen to local news bulletins.

It was also observed that 62.92% of males and 46.47% of females were willing to go back to their work after they recover from the surgery and get their aphakic correcting spectacles. The patients who were aot willing to go back to their work in the higher age group both in male and female group of patients as shown in [Table - 6]. This is under­standable as the Indian people tend to retire from active work usually at the age of sixty years.

Another interesting behavioral attitude observed was that out of 184 patients who were operated for the first time (the other eye in various stages of immature senile cataract) 141 of them (76.63%) only were willing to get operated for the fellow eye later. Forty three patients (23.37%) were not willing to get operated in the fellow eye and most of them were either satisfied with working vision in one eye or felt too old to get operated again though there was no age difference in the two groups of patients or they thought that the operation is too painful an experience to go through again. May be with course of time some of the later group of patients might change their mind and concept towards cataract surgery and certainly it calls for better educational and motiva­tional efforts to make them change their attitude towards the adoption of cataract surgery in the fellow eye.


  Summary Top


A survey of 293 patients operated in one of the mobile eye camps is made to identify the social, economic and behavioral factors associated with the acceptance and adoption of cataract surgery in such eye camps.


  Acknowledgement Top


We wish to thank Mrs. Rita James for Computer Programming and analysis of the data.

 
  References Top

1.
Venkataswamy, G., 1981, SEA/ophthal WHO/36: 44-47.  Back to cited text no. 1
    
2.
Das, Venkataswamy, G. 1983. Ind. J. Ophthal­mol 31:924 -927.  Back to cited text no. 2
    
3.
Mathur, A., Sehgal, P., Narang, S.K. 1984. Ind. J. Ophthalmol 39: 165-168.  Back to cited text no. 3
    
4.
Venkataswamy, G and Billiant, G., 1981, J. Visual Impairment & Blindness, December : 405-408  Back to cited text no. 4
    



 
 
    Tables

  [Table - 1], [Table - 2], [Table - 3], [Table - 4], [Table - 5], [Table - 6]



 

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