Health burden of wildlife induced injuries among the Maasai cattle herders in Kajiado County, Kenya
Makau, Isaac Kasilu
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Wildlife induced injuries are a major but neglected emerging public health problem which contributes significantly to high mortality and morbidity among cattle herders. The objectives of the study were to determine the health burden of wildlife induced injuries, to identify the risk factors and establish the risk indices associated with wildlife induced injuries and to determine the protective measures adopted to mitigate wildlife induced injuries among the Maasai cattle herders in Kajiado Central and Loitokitok sub-counties. The study adopted a descriptive cross-sectional study design and mixed methods where quantitative and qualitative data were collected. Multi-stage sampling method was used. A total of 262 respondents were sampled for this study. The data collection tools used in this study included researcher administered questionnaires, Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) and key informant interviews (KIIs). Questionnaire was pre-tested be to ensure validity and reliability. Quantitative raw data from the field was checked for errors and completeness, through editing of responses. The cleaned data was exported to Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) software version 22 and Disability-Adjusted Life Years (DALYs) software for analysis. Descriptive statistical analysis was used to reveal the distribution of tendencies in the sample data. Descriptive statistics namely frequency tables and percentages were used to describe, organize and summarize the study findings. Chi-square test was used to establish if associations existed between study variables. A pvalue of ≤ 0.05 was considered significant. Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA) was used to the association between risk factors and wildlife induced injuries. Multiple Discriminant Function Analysis (MDFA) was used to determine the linear relationship between variables. Study findings show that wildlife induced injuries accounted for a total of 3,352 DALYs among cattle herders in Kajiado Central and Loitokitok sub-counties. Of this, 1,988 DALYs resulted in male Maasai cattle herders and 1,364 DALYs resulted in female Maasai cattle herders which indicate that male Maasai cattle herders lost more healthy years of life due to cattle herding than female Maasai cattle herders. Overall evidence generated from the study will be used to influence policy and direct focus on interventions geared towards addressing public health issues of significance to the poor Maasai cattle herders.