Health care seeking behaviour for visual dysfunction among motor vehicle drivers in Osun State, Southwest Nigeria
Introduction: visual impairment is recognized as a public health problem worldwide. People and generally drivers do not often go for routine medical or eye examination based on varied reasons. This study assessed health care seeking behaviour for visual dysfunction among motor vehicle drivers in Osun state, Southwest Nigeria.
Methods: this was a comparative cross-sectional study among 120 male commercial and 120 government drivers, selected using multi-stage sampling technique in Osogbo, Osun State. Data on knowledge, attitude and health seeking behavior of drivers for visual dysfunction and barriers for not seeking medical treatment was collected using a pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire. Questions on awareness about visual functions and attitude of the respondents concerning visual problems were scored. Two sample independent t-test was used to elicit association between mean age/knowledge of government and commercial drivers and health seeking behavior for visual dysfunction.
Results: the mean age of government and commercial drivers was 44.53years ± 8.51 and 38.52years ± 8.60 respectively. The mean knowledge (p<0.001) and attitude (p=0.001) differences of government and commercial drivers were associated with health seeking behavior for visual dysfunction. Of the 120 government drivers, 24 (20.0%) were aware of their current visual problems. Of the 24, government drivers, 10 (47.6%) visited the hospital for treatment. Busy workplace schedule (n = 5, 20.8%) and lack of awareness of visual defects ((n= 3, 12.5%) by commercial drivers were identified barriers for not seeking medical treatment for visual dysfunction.
Conclusion: knowledge and attitude towards visual dysfunction were higher among the government drivers compared to commercial counterparts. Government drivers had better health seeking behavior for visual dysfunction as compared to their commercial counterparts. We recommended routine eye medical check-up for early detection of visual dysfunction in motor vehicle drivers.