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05-03-2016 | ORIGINAL ARTICLE | Issue 2/2017

Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management 2/2017

Scavenging demeanor in Bahawalpur, Pakistan: social and health perspective

Journal:
Journal of Material Cycles and Waste Management > Issue 2/2017
Authors:
Asma Majeed, Syeda Adila Batool, Muhammad Nawaz Chaudhry, Rana Aatif Siddique

Abstract

Social and health issues are now considered as an integral part of waste management system. Scavengers or waste pickers are the main victims in waste management sector. Objective of the cross sectional study carried out for a group of scavengers living in huts was to highlight the socio-demographic characteristic, working conditions and occupational health risks with main emphasis on relation of infectious disease prevalence and waste picking activity in Bahawalpur area. Of the 100 waste pickers and 100 non-waste pickers HIV was not detected in any participant, HBV was detected in 4 and 2 % and HCV in 28 and 6 % respectively. Considerable differences were observed in the detection rates of HCV (OR: 6.09, 95 % CI 2.4, 15.5; p = 0.000) and either markers (OR: 5.4, 95 % CI 2.35, 12.5; p = 0.000) in waste pickers compared to general population. The higher incidence of Hepatitis among waste pickers compared to non waste pickers is a function of their occupation, unhygienic living conditions, lack of immunization, ignorance and need of training regarding waste handling.

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