Browsing by Author "Munthali, Alister"
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- ItemFactors related to environmental barriers experienced by persons with and without disabilities in diverse African settings(Public Library of Science, 2017-12) Visagie, Surona; Eide, Arne H.; Dyrstad, Karin; Mannan, Hasheem; Swartz, Leslie; Schneider, Marguerite; Mji, Gubela; Munthali, Alister; Khogali, Mustafa; Van Rooy, Gert; Hem, Karl-Gerhard; MacLachlan, MalcolmENGLISH ABSTRACT: This paper explores differences in experienced environmental barriers between individuals with and without disabilities and the impact of additional factors on experienced environmental barriers. Data was collected in 2011–2012 by means of a two-stage cluster sampling and comprised 400–500 households in different sites in South Africa, Sudan Malawi and Namibia. Data were collected through self-report survey questionnaires. In addition to descriptive statistics and simple statistical tests a structural equation model was developed and tested. The combined file comprised 9,307 participants. The Craig Hospital Inventory of Environmental Factors was used to assess the level of environmental barriers. Transportation, the natural environment and access to health care services created the biggest barriers. An exploratory factor analysis yielded support for a one component solution for environmental barriers. A scale was constructed by adding the items together and dividing by number of items, yielding a range from one to five with five representing the highest level of environmental barriers and one the lowest. An overall mean value of 1.51 was found. Persons with disabilities scored 1.66 and persons without disabilities 1.36 (F = 466.89, p < .001). Bivariate regression analyses revealed environmental barriers to be higher among rural respondents, increasing with age and severity of disability, and lower for those with a higher level of education and with better physical and mental health. Gender had an impact only among persons without disabilities, where women report more barriers than men. Structural equation model analysis showed that socioeconomic status was significantly and negatively associated with environmental barriers. Activity limitation is significantly associated with environmental barriers when controlling for a number of other individual characteristics. Reducing barriers for the general population would go some way to reduce the impact of these for persons with activity limitations, but additional and specific adaptations will be required to ensure an inclusive society.
- ItemInclusion and human rights in health policies : comparative and benchmarking analysis of 51 policies from Malawi, Sudan, South Africa and Namibia(Public Library of Science, 2012-05-23) MacLachlan, Malcolm; Amin, Mutamad; Mannan, Hasheem; El Tayeb, Shahla; Bedri, Nafisa; Swartz, Leslie; Munthali, Alister; Van Rooy, Gert; McVeigh, JoanneWhile many health services strive to be equitable, accessible and inclusive, peoples' right to health often goes unrealized, particularly among vulnerable groups. The extent to which health policies explicitly seek to achieve such goals sets the policy context in which services are delivered and evaluated. An analytical framework was developed - EquiFrame - to evaluate 1) the extent to which 21 Core Concepts of human rights were addressed in policy documents, and 2) coverage of 12 Vulnerable Groups who might benefit from such policies. Using this framework, analysis of 51 policies across Malawi, Namibia, South Africa and Sudan, confirmed the relevance of all Core Concepts and Vulnerable Groups. Further, our analysis highlighted some very strong policies, serious shortcomings in others as well as country-specific patterns. If social inclusion and human rights do not underpin policy formation, it is unlikely they will be inculcated in service delivery. EquiFrame facilitates policy analysis and benchmarking, and provides a means for evaluating policy revision and development. © 2012 MacLachlan et al.
- ItemLearning from doing the EquitAble project : content, context, process, and impact of a multi-country research project on vulnerable populations in Africa(AOSIS Publishing, 2014-10) MacLachlan, Mac; Amin, Mutamad; Mji, Gubela; Mannan, Hasheem; McVeigh, Joanne; McAuliffe, Eilish; Amadhila, Elina; Munthali, Alister; Eide, Arne, H.; Kudakwashe Dube, A.Background: The ‘EquitAble’ project carried out content analyses of policies and collected and analysed qualitative and quantitative data concerning access to health services in Sudan, Malawi, Namibia and South Africa. Our particular concern was to address the situation of people with disabilities, although not in isolation from other marginalised or vulnerable groups. Objectives: This article reports on the content, context, process and impact of project EquitAble, funded by the European Commission Seventh Research Framework Programme, which brought together researchers from Ireland, Norway, South Africa, Namibia, Sudan and Malawi. Method: After the 4-year project ended in February 2013, all members of the consortium were asked to anonymously complete a bespoke questionnaire designed by the coordinating team. The purpose of the questionnaire was to capture the views of those who collaborated on the research project in relation to issues of content, context, process and impact of the EquitAble project. Results: Our results indicated some of the successes and challenges encountered by our consortium. Conclusion: We identified contextual and process learning points, factors often not discussed in papers, which typically focus on the reporting of the ‘content’ of results.
- ItemPerceived barriers for accessing health services among individuals with disability in four African countries(Public Library of Science, 2015) Eide, Arne H.; Mannan, Hasheem; Khogali, Mustafa; Van Rooy, Gert; Swartz, Leslie; Munthali, Alister; Hem, Karl-Gerhard; MacLachlan, Malcolm; Dyrstad, KarinENGLISH ABSTRACT: There is an increasing awareness among researchers and others that marginalized and vulnerable groups face problems in accessing health care. Access problems in particular in low-income countries may jeopardize the targets set by the United Nations through the Millennium Development Goals. Thus, identifying barriers for individuals with disability in accessing health services is a research priority. The current study aimed at identifying the magnitude of specific barriers, and to estimate the impact of disability on barriers for accessing health care in general. A population based household survey was carried out in Sudan, Namibia, Malawi, and South Africa, including a total of 9307 individuals. The sampling strategy was a two-stage cluster sampling within selected geographical areas in each country. A listing procedure to identify households with disabled members using the Washington Group six screening question was followed by administering household questionnaires in households with and without disabled members, and questionnaires for individuals with and without disability. The study shows that lack of transport, availability of services, inadequate drugs or equipment, and costs, are the four major barriers for access. The study also showed substantial variation in perceived barriers, reflecting largely socio-economic differences between the participating countries. Urbanity, socio-economic status, and severity of activity limitations are important predictors for barriers, while there is no gender difference. It is suggested that education reduces barriers to health services only to the extent that it reduces poverty. Persons with disability face additional and particular barriers to health services. Addressing these barriers requires an approach to health that stresses equity over equality.
- ItemSeasonality in associations between dietary diversity scores and nutrient adequacy ratios among pregnant women in rural Malawi – a cross-sectional study(Swedish Nutrition Foundation, 2019) Hjertholm, Katrine G.; Holmboe-Ottesen, Gerd; Iversen, Per O.; Mdala, Ibrahimu; Munthali, Alister; Maleta, Kenneth; Shi, Zumin; Ferguson, Elaine; Kamudoni, PenjaniBackground: Dietary diversity scores (DDS) are simple indicators often used as proxies for nutrient adequacy. A 10-food group indicator is proposed by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations as a global standard for measuring dietary diversity among women in low-resource settings. However, its validity as a proxy for nutrient adequacy across different agricultural seasons for pregnant women has not been determined. Objective: We studied associations between DDS and nutrient adequacy ratios (NAR) across two different agricultural seasons (pre- and post-harvest seasons) for pregnant women in rural Malawi and assessed whether a 1-day DDS or a 3-day DDS would be the best indicator of nutrient adequacy. Design: Dietary intakes of 330 pregnant women were assessed between gestational weeks 28 and 35. Intakes of energy, macronutrients, and 11 micronutrients were estimated using three repeated interactive 24-h diet recalls, and DDS were also calculated from these days. Correlation coefficients (r) between DDS, NAR, and mean adequacy ratio (MAR) of the 11 micronutrients were determined. Results: After energy adjustments, we found significant correlations between DDS and MAR with both DDS indicators in the preharvest season (r = 0.22–0.23; p < 0.001) but not in the post-harvest season (p > 0.05). For individual energy-adjusted NARs, correlations were not consistently significant across the two seasons and the two DDS indicators. Conclusions: Our results suggest that DDS could be used to predict overall nutrient adequacy during the preharvest season. As similar correlations were found using both the 1- and 3-day indicators, we recommend using a 1-day DDS, for simplicity. However, as the indicators are sensitive to seasonality they should be used with care in this study setting.