UGC Sponsored minor projects-2010

Topic : Design and Try Out of a Multimedia Package on Health Awareness of Occupational Diseases for the Women at Risk Employed in Coir Retting Along the Coastal Belt of Kerala
UGC Approval No. and Date : MRP(H)-1362110-111KLKE1341UGC-SWRO dt22-Dec-2010
Amount Sanctioned : Rs. 70000/-
Date of Completion : 22nd Feb 2013
Principal Investigator : Dr.Divya C.Senan

Summary of the Study

The present study was intended to design and develop a multimedia package on Health Awareness related to occupational diseases due to coir retting and to find out the effectiveness of the Package on health awareness among the coir workers of coastal areas of Kerala. As the prelude to the experimental study, the extent of prevailing health awareness regarding occupational diseases and the need of awareness among women coir workers in the select three dimensions of occupational disease awareness was identified with a view to prepare multimedia package. A preliminary analysis of the scores of the different variables was attempted, to answer the research questions posed and tested the hypotheses formulated for the study.

Hypotheses

The hypotheses of this study are

  1. The women coir workers of Kerala are unaware of the various occupational diseases, its health hazards and various remedial measures.
  2. The developed multimedia package is effective in increasing the health awareness level regarding occupational diseases among the women coir workers.

Objectives of the study

  1. To study the impact of coir retting on the health status of the women, with special reference to those employed in this trade.
  2. To develop multimedia packages on “health education for women” with special reference to occupational diseases.
  3. To conduct “Awareness Campaign” with the help of multimedia packages.
  4. To empower the coastal women engaged in coir retting regarding health.
  5. To collaborate with other local bodies such as panchayats, blocks and health centers to promote health education.

Methodology

The methodology employed to collect relevant quantitative & qualitative data needed for the present study is done under the following steps.

  • Preliminary survey of the retting yards regarding awareness level on occupational diseases, its health hazard and remedial measures among the women coir workers of AnjengoPanchayat.
  • Development of a multimedia package on “Health Awareness of Occupational Diseases for Women”. The multimedia package include interview with doctors, cause and effect of various diseases, video clippings of various health hazards etc.
  • Conducting awareness campaigns by the student teachers with the help of the developed multimedia package.
  • To collaborate with other local bodies such as panchayats, blocks and health centers to promote health education.

Tools and Techniques Used in the Study

  • Occupational Disease Awareness inventory
  • Multimedia Package based on Health awareness of occupational disease related to coir retting
  • Questionnaire to analyze the extent of health awareness regarding occupational disease related to coir industry

The data thus collected were tabulated and subjected to analysis using suitable statistical techniques such as test of significance of difference between means.

CONCLUSIONS BASED ON THE FINDINGS OF THE STUDY

The conclusions that emerged from the results of the analysis of data according to the hypotheses formulated for the study are given under two sections

Section I: Extent of health awareness on occupational diseases related to coir industry and its remedial measures.
Section II: Effectiveness of the multimedia learning material for health education among the women coir workers of Kerala

Section I :Extent of health awareness on occupational diseases related to coir industry and its remedial measures

The first hypothesis in this section is: The prevailing awareness level of the coir workers on the various health hazards of occupational diseases and its remedial measures are adequate.

It pertains to analysis of the Occupational disease Awareness Inventory score, and the following conclusions were arrived at:

Conclusion 1

The prevailing health awareness level of women coir workers regarding occupational diseases is not satisfactory in all the select three dimensions.

This is supported by the following findings of the study:

  1. Only a small percentage of coir workers were found to be aware of various occupational diseases (percentages ranged from 0 to 7.18), while the majority of the coir workers were found to be ignorant about the various occupational as well as communicable diseases (percentages ranged from 10.50 to 57.61-Vide Table 5.1 to 5.5).
  2. Majority (43.03%) of the coir workers are unaware of the various health hazards of coir dyes and coir piths while most of the sample selected (32.68%) opined that they are aware of the health hazards to some extent.
  3. While analysing the results it was found that nearly half (45.85%) of the selected coir workers “Never” practiced the remedial measures to avoid occupational diseases to a certain extent, and almost an equal percentage (43.50%) of coir workers “Rarely” practiced the same.

Section II:Effectiveness of the multimedia package for health education among the women coir workers of kerala

Conclusions from the first section of this chapter reveal that the women coir workers of coastal areas of Kerala are ignorant of the various diseases related to their job. It is found that they do not practice any remedial measures to avoid the health hazards of occupational diseases.

Majority of the women are engaged in retting industry, irrespective of their age. Since they are spending almost the whole day in the unhygienic conditions prevailing in the yard they are at a high risk of developing occupational diseases. Their lack of knowledge about health and hygiene serves as the prime reason for the contagious diseases. From review of related studies it was revealed that the coir retting industry is an activity that is intricately interwoven with the social and economic structure. Field survey results indicated that 57 % of the sample suffered from job-oriented disease like skin disease, blindness, headache, back bone pains and respiratory disease. Rotted husk release more organic pollutants and they highly affect the water quality parameters. Therefore, it is a difficult task to save these women from these occupational hazards unless some new affordable technique is introduced. Majority of the households (70 %) fall within a low socio-economic status with a deepening poverty background depicted by low educational achievement and occupational status. Hence there arise the need to make them aware of the various health hazards, its causes and effects. The search for a strategy which enables to give them awareness regarding health education results in an awareness program through multimedia. Hence, the investigator aims in developing a multimedia package for health and hygiene for coastal women and to conduct awareness program with the help of the developed package on the target group of coir retting industry so as to empower them.

The second hypothesis is: The developed multimedia package is effective in enhancing the health awareness level regarding occupational diseases among the women coir workers.

It is related to the analysis of awareness test on health education regarding occupational diseases related to coir industry.

Conclusion – 2

The developed multimedia package is effective in enhancing the health awareness level regarding occupational diseases among the women coir workers.

(a) When the pre- and post test scores on the health awareness of the experimental group were compared, the critical ratio obtained was found to be significant at 0.01 level

SUMMARY OF THE FINDINGS

The study throws light on the fact that the prevailing health awareness level of women coir workers regarding occupational diseases are not satisfactory in all the select three dimensions.The study also found that the developed Multimedia Package on heath awareness regarding occupational diseases is effective in enhancing the awareness of women coir workers of coastal areas of Kerala.

REVIEW AND RECOMMENDATIONS

Coir retting industry is presently passing through difficult times, mainly due to the scarcity of raw materials, increased price of yarn and products and reduced inflow of orders from abroad. Coir Board in collaboration with the State Government may initiate proper steps for improving the status of this industry.

The premises of the retting yard situated in the Coastal areas of Kerala, are inhabited mainly by the community of people engaged in coir industry. Retting practices cause air and water pollution which adversely affects the community and ecosystem. In most coastal areas one of the major problems faced by the people engaged in retting activity is lack of safe drinking water. Also they need proper sanitation facilities.

Awareness programmes conducted in the various Wards of Anjengo Panchayath has raised their health awareness level regarding occupational as well as communicable diseases. Coir labourers receive very low wages from co-operative societies. It is most striking that worker especially women spent the whole day in the unhygienic conditions of the yard and finds hardly any time to spare for other educational and cultural activities. Low financial conditions compounded with illiteracy make their life miserable. Retting community deserves much support from the Government for the upliftment of their health as well as life status.

Papers Published/ Presented from the study

Divya C.Senan (2013). Empowering the Coir retting Women along the coastal belt of Kerala using a Multimedia Package on Health Awareness. In Jayanta Mete &Ajit Mondal, Emerging Issues on Women Empowerment (1st Edition, pp.344-350). Delhi,India: Kunal Books.

ISBN: 978-93-82420-20-0

Divya C.Senan (2013) Impact of Health Literacy Multimedia Package (HMLP) in Improving Awareness on Job-Related Diseases: A Case Study in Kerala, India, IOSR Journal of Research and Method in Education, Vol.2, Issue 5, July – August 2013, 48-54,(ISSN (Online): 2320 -737X)

Presented a paper on “Design of a Multimedia Package on Health Awareness of Occupational Diseases for the Women at Risk Employed in Coir Retting Along the Coastal Belt of Kerala”