Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Epidemiol Community Health. 2011 May;65(5):432-7. doi: 10.1136/jech.2009.091637. Epub 2010 May 12.

Evaluation of an Australian indigenous housing programme: community level impact on crowding, infrastructure function and hygiene.

Author information

  • 1Menzies School of Health Research, Institute of Advanced Studies, Charles Darwin University, Darwin, Northern Territory, Australia. ross.bailie@menzies.edu.au

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND AIM:

Housing programmes in indigenous Australian communities have focused largely on achieving good standards of infrastructure function. The impact of this approach was assessed on three potentially important housing-related influences on child health at the community level: (1) crowding, (2) the functional state of the house infrastructure and (3) the hygienic condition of the houses.

METHODS:

A before-and-after study, including house infrastructure surveys and structured interviews with the main householder, was conducted in all homes of young children in 10 remote Australian indigenous communities.

RESULTS:

Compared with baseline, follow-up surveys showed (1) a small non-significant decrease in the mean number of people per bedroom in the house on the night before the survey (3.4, 95% CI 3.1 to 3.6 at baseline vs 3.2, 95% CI 2.9 to 3.4 at follow-up; natural logarithm transformed t test, t=1.3, p=0.102); (2) a marginally significant overall improvement in infrastructure function scores (Kruskal-Wallis test, χ(2)=3.9, p=0.047); and (3) no clear overall improvement in hygiene (Kruskal-Wallis test, χ(2)=0.3, p=0.605).

CONCLUSION:

Housing programmes of this scale that focus on the provision of infrastructure alone appear unlikely to lead to more hygienic general living environments, at least in this study context. A broader ecological approach to housing programmes delivered in these communities is needed if potential health benefits are to be maximised. This ecological approach would require a balanced programme of improving access to health hardware, hygiene promotion and creating a broader enabling environment in communities.

PMID:
20466712
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3071088
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk