Gender Differentials in Health and Treatment Seeking among Elderly in India: Does Living Condition Matter?
Sutapa Agrawal, Independent Researcher, Population and Reproductive Health, India
Paper highlights gender differential in health status, health risk and treatment seeking behavior of elderly according to living condition in India by exploring data of 39694 elderly from NFHS-2 (1998-99). Finding shows elderly living alone are more prone to environmental and nutritional risk factors. Their health status is poorer than elderly living with family. Even after being much old, majority of elderly are working and also for cash. Male elderly have worst health condition, because of indulgence in high health risk behaviour such as drinking alcohol, smoking and chewing tobacco. More proportion of elderly living alone seeks poor treatment, which makes them more vulnerable to diseases. In logistic result for different morbidity conditions living arrangement emerged as most predominant factor even after controlling for other factors. Therefore, elderly living alone should be taken more care with strong public support system especially those elderly who belongs to weaker section of society.