ASSOCIATION OF SOCIO-DEMOGRAPHIC CHARACTERISTICS AND TYPE OF DISABILITIES AND HEALTH LITERACY AMONG PEOPLE WITH DISABILITIES IN SELANGOR

Bidang Kajian : Orang Kurang Upaya

Pelajar/Pengkaji Oleh: Nur Salwani Binti Rosely

Alamat Emel: salwanirosely@gmail.com

Tarikh: 10/03/2021


Abstrak Kajian


Introduction: People with disabilities have largely been neglected for public health attention even though poor health outcomes have been reported in this population. Poor health outcomes have been shown significantly associated with limited health literacy in the general population. Health literacy is important to empower knowledge, personal skills and confidence in changing the health behavior and improving health outcomes. Nonetheless, there has not been any study assessing the level of health literacy of this vulnerable population in Malaysia. Therefore, the objective of this study was to assess the level of health literacy among people with disabilities. It also aimed to determine the association of health literacy with socio-demographic characteristics (age, gender, education level, ethnicity and income), type of disabilities and Body Mass Index (BMI). Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted on a sample of people with disabilities aged 18 years and above, independent-living and registered with the Department of Social Welfare Malaysia. Socio-demographics, disability and health literacy data were collected from a self-administered online survey from June to October 2020. The outcome variable was health literacy which was assessed by the Health Literacy Questionnaire-Short Form with 12 items (HLS-SF12) and categorized as limited or sufficient. Descriptive statistics was used to describe the distribution of socio-demographic characteristics, BMI and health literacy based on type of disability in frequency and percentage. Chi-square was tested for association of all categorical variables and binary logistic regression was analyzed to quantify the odd ratios (OR) and 95% confidence interval (CI). Results: A total of 181 people living with disabilities participated in the study. More than half (55.8%) reported ‘sufficient’ health literacy. The prevalence of limited health literacy was higher (44.2%) than the general population (33.3%). Within three domains of health literacy, health care literacy showed highest proportion (44.8%) of limited health literacy. Hearing disability (73.3%) and normal body weight (65.1%) had highest proportion of sufficient health literacy. Limited health literacy was prevalent among participants with multiple disability (71.4%), obesity (48.9%) and underweight (43.5%). Level of health literacy was associated with sex, ethnicity, education and income. Sufficient heath literacy was independently associated with male sex (OR = 2.3, 95% CI: 1.112, 4.757) and having higher income of more than RM2000 (OR = 6.2, 95% CI: 1.528, 25.167) after controlling for other determinants. However, type of disability and BMI were not differed by level of health literacy. Conclusion: This study found more than half of people with disabilities had sufficient health literacy. Ethnicity, education, sex and income were the associated factors. Being male and higher income were associated with higher health literacy. Public health education campaigns should incorporate the above factors in tailoring and targeting health information to people with disabilities. Keywords: health literacy, people with disabilities, socio-demographic, disability, health outcome.

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