Inequalities in multimorbidity in South Africa


Show simple item record Ataguba, John E en_ZA 2015-11-23T11:42:15Z 2015-11-23T11:42:15Z 2013 en_ZA
dc.identifier.citation Ataguba, J. E. (2013). Inequalities in multimorbidity in South Africa. Int J Equity Health, 12(1), 64. en_ZA
dc.description.abstract BACKGROUND: Very little is known about socioeconomic related inequalities in multimorbidity, especially in developing countries. Traditionally, studies on health inequalities have mainly focused on a single disease condition or different conditions in isolation. This paper examines socioeconomic inequality in multimorbidity in illness and disability in South Africa between 2005 and 2008. METHODS: Data were drawn from the 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008 rounds of the nationally representative annual South African General Household Surveys (GHS). Indirectly standardised concentration indices were used to assess socioeconomic inequality. A proxy index of socioeconomic status was constructed, for each year, using a selected set of variables that are available in all the GHS rounds. Multimorbidity in illness and disability were constructed using data on nine illnesses and six disabilities contained in the GHS. RESULTS: Multimorbidity affects a substantial number of South Africans. Most often, based on the nine illness conditions and six disability conditions considered, multimorbidity in illness and multimorbidity in disability are each found to involve only two conditions. In 2008 in South Africa, the multimorbidity that affected the greatest number of individuals (0.6% of the population) combined high blood pressure (BP) with at least one other illness. The combination of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and other condition or conditions is the least reported (i.e. 0.02% of the population). Between 2005 and 2008, multimorbidity in illness and disability is more prevalent among the poor; in disabilities this is yet more consistent. The concentration index of multiple illnesses in 2005 and 2008 are 0.0009 and 0.0006 respectively. The corresponding values for multiple disabilities are 0.0006 and 0.0006 respectively. CONCLUSION: While there is a dearth of information on the socioeconomic distribution of multimorbidity in many developing countries, this paper has shown that its distribution in South Africa indicates that the poor bear a greater burden of multimorbidity. This is more so for disability than for illness. This paper argues that, given the high burden and skewed socioeconomic distribution of multimorbidity, there is a need to design policies to address this situation. Further, there is a need to design surveys that specifically assess multimorbidity. en_ZA
dc.language.iso eng en_ZA
dc.publisher BioMed Central Ltd en_ZA
dc.rights This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License en_ZA
dc.rights.uri en_ZA
dc.source International Journal for Equity in Health en_ZA
dc.source.uri en_ZA
dc.subject.other Multimorbidity en_ZA
dc.subject.other Socioeconomic inequality en_ZA
dc.subject.other South Africa en_ZA
dc.title Inequalities in multimorbidity in South Africa en_ZA
dc.type Journal Article en_ZA
dc.rights.holder 2013 Ataguba; licensee BioMed Central Ltd. en_ZA
uct.type.publication Research en_ZA
uct.type.resource Article en_ZA
dc.publisher.institution University of Cape Town
dc.publisher.faculty Faculty of Health Sciences en_ZA
dc.publisher.department Health Economics Unit en_ZA
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This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License