Purpose: Infectious diseases are one of the leading causes of death among children under five (U5s) across both India & globally. This is worse in slum environments with poor access to water, sanitation & hygiene (WASH), good nutrition & a safe built environment. Globally, a One Health (e.g. human, animal & environment) approach is increasingly advocated by WHO, FAO & OIE to reduce infections & antimicrobial resistance. As U5s living in peri-urban slums are exposed to household and community owned companion & livestock animals and pests, the CHIP Consortium hypothesized that utilizing a One Health approach to co-produce behavior change & slum upgrading interventions may reduce this burden where other WASH & nutrition interventions have failed. This study aimed to assess the feasibility of utilising a One Health approach to assess U5 infection & risk factor prevalence in Jaipurs urban slums prior to undertaking prospective cohort studies involving culture and culture independent sampling of U5s and animals across our study sites in Jaipur, Jakarta & Antofagasta. Methods: We administered a Rapid Household Survey to 25 purposely selected households across six slums. The questionnaire evaluated infection prevalence, health seeking behaviors, the built environment, presence of animals & pests, and individual to household-level demographics. Associations were calculated using correlations among continuous variables to show strength of significance between continuous variables. Results: We found a high incidence of infections in children under five at 40%. This was most significantly correlated with accessibility of sanitary toilets (r = .62) and household expenditure. Vaccination coverage and child characteristics (such as size) were minimally correlated, while the presence of animals (pets or pests) was not correlated; the latter was likely due to the design of the survey. Conclusion: This study found a higher infection prevalence than previous studies. We also found higher correlations with infection incidence among household-level characteristics, indicating that effective interventions need to address both the built and socio-economic environments. A pilot prospective cohort study, which includes researcher observations for the presence of animals to account for inconsistencies in the survey, is now underway.
Author and article information
UCL Open: Environment Preprint
] Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, UCL
] Population, Policy and Practice Department, UCL
] Freetown City Council, Freetown, Sierra Leone
] Jeevan Ashram Sanstha
] Indonesia One Health University Network
] Health and Wellbeing Department, Southwark Council
] Bartlett School of Environmental Design and Engineering, UCL
] Institute for Global Health, UCL
] Jawaharlal Nehru University
] Department of Geography, UCL
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Data availability: The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.