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India – GIS urban health survey of Thiruvananthapuram

A health check on capital-ists, 20 Nov 2009

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: It’s not easy to handle the mantle of being the capital city. From its air, water and roads, everything counts.

A survey to check on the health status of the capital city’s population is being done by two major research centres of the Kerala University. The survey is titled ‘Urban Health: searching for patterns, differentials and correlations of Thiruvananthapuram corporation using GIS technology’.

It’s the Population Study Centre and the Centre for Geoinformation Science and Technology who are conducting the ambitious survey. Not only is the survey an effort to model the patterns of urban health, it also aims to find out the relation of personal health with natural parameters like availability of water, cleanliness and pollution.

It does not end there. The habits of citizens in the area of health, like their treatment-seeking pattern, access to treatment points and even the quality of drinking water would be surveyed.

As part of the survey, the surveyors will measure the sugar level as well as BP. This will be done free of cost. The details of these analyses will be handed over to the citizens.

“The survey would also examine various factors like mosquito breeding centres in the vicinity and the quality of the water in the local well,’’ said S. Santhosh, additional director in charge of the Population Study Centre.

“The PH value of the water in the wells will be studied. Apart from that, the water in the well will be sent to the lab for testing. These results will also be made available to the persons concerned,’’ he said.

The survey would also try to identify the reproductive and healthcare problems of the female population in the city. A health screening report of the households will be prepared on the basis of the survey, he said.

The pilot survey has been kicked off in selected wards in the coastal, rural, semi-urban and urban areas of the Corporation. In the next stage, the survey would be extended to all wards of the Corporation.

The Population Research Centre had earlier conducted a landmark survey, the ‘National Family Health Survey’, in 1992-93.

At present, seven surveys conducted by the centre are in progress and the major one is the ‘Baseline Survey on Reproductive and Child Health’ in Kozhikode and Palakkad districts.

Source – Express Buzz

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