Association of socio-demographic characteristics with pattern of health seeking behavior among Hepatitis C patients in Pakistan

Document Type



School of Nursing and Midwifery, Pakistan


Objectives: To identify association between socio-demographic characteristics and pattern of health seeking behavior among hepatitis C patients in Karachi, Pakistan. Study design, settings and duration: A descriptive, cross-sectional study done at Aga Khan University Hospital and the Civil Hospital Karachi between March and May 2013. Patients and Methods: Hepatitis C patients who were coming for treatment at the above 2 sites underwent a filling of questionnaire by the researcher. The questionnaire collected basic demographic information and their health seeking behavior i.e. visit to traditional healer or spiritual healer or medical doctor. Sample size of 250 patients was calculated. Analysis was done by using Chi square test and Fisher’s exact test. p-value of 0.05 was considered as statistically significant. Results: A total of 250 hepatitis patients were interviewed. The study showed that patient’s occupation and educational level had significant association with their first visit either to a spiritual healer or traditional healer. More educated group consulted the medical doctor while those with none or low education initially went to see spiritual healers (p < 0.008) and second visit was made to traditional healers (p < 0.002). Patients with larger number of children went less often to visit a medical doctor on their second visit (p = 0.007), and family members belonging to the medical field were more likely to make their first visit to doctors (p < 0.05). Conclusion: Socio-demographic characteristics greatly influence the pattern of health seeking behavior among hepatitis C patients.

Publication (Name of Journal)

Pakistan Journal of Medical Research