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Occupational Health: Farmers Knowledge on Pesticide usage and it’s Harmful Effects on Human Health in Rural Areas of South India


Affiliations
1 School of Environmental Science, Public Health and Sanitation Management, Karnataka State Rural Development and Panchayat Raj University, Gadag – 582101, Karnataka, India
 

An estimated 1.3 billion workers are engaged in agricultural production worldwide. This represents half of the total world labor force. Almost 60% of them are in developing countries. Pesticides can enter the human body by three common ways: Through the skin (contact), the mouth (ingestion) and the lungs (inhalation). The state of the chemical, i.e. solid, liquid or gas, affects the chances of pesticide penetration into the body. During the usage of pesticides farmers reported problems such as eye irritation, headache, dizziness, breathing difficulty, skin rashes and all of these symptoms at least once during their exposure to pesticides. A field based cross sectional study was conducted in the rural areas of Karnataka state, Gadag district, to assess the farmer’s knowledge, attitudes and practices about pesticide usage and its harmful effects on human health. A pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire was used to obtain the data from January to February 2020. Data was collected at the rural settings by visiting their house and agriculture fields. Totally 265 farmers were interviewed, out of that more than half of them have good knowledge about pesticide usage but only few of them have knowledge about the harmful effects of pesticide on their health. In our study findings majority of the farmers are not aware about the health hazards due to usage of pesticides, they showed good attitude and poor practices about pesticide usage.

Keywords

Attitude and Practices, Farmers Knowledge, Health Awareness, Occupational Health, Occupational Hazard.
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  • Occupational Health: Farmers Knowledge on Pesticide usage and it’s Harmful Effects on Human Health in Rural Areas of South India

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Authors

Gulappa Devegappanavar
School of Environmental Science, Public Health and Sanitation Management, Karnataka State Rural Development and Panchayat Raj University, Gadag – 582101, Karnataka, India

Abstract


An estimated 1.3 billion workers are engaged in agricultural production worldwide. This represents half of the total world labor force. Almost 60% of them are in developing countries. Pesticides can enter the human body by three common ways: Through the skin (contact), the mouth (ingestion) and the lungs (inhalation). The state of the chemical, i.e. solid, liquid or gas, affects the chances of pesticide penetration into the body. During the usage of pesticides farmers reported problems such as eye irritation, headache, dizziness, breathing difficulty, skin rashes and all of these symptoms at least once during their exposure to pesticides. A field based cross sectional study was conducted in the rural areas of Karnataka state, Gadag district, to assess the farmer’s knowledge, attitudes and practices about pesticide usage and its harmful effects on human health. A pre-tested semi-structured questionnaire was used to obtain the data from January to February 2020. Data was collected at the rural settings by visiting their house and agriculture fields. Totally 265 farmers were interviewed, out of that more than half of them have good knowledge about pesticide usage but only few of them have knowledge about the harmful effects of pesticide on their health. In our study findings majority of the farmers are not aware about the health hazards due to usage of pesticides, they showed good attitude and poor practices about pesticide usage.

Keywords


Attitude and Practices, Farmers Knowledge, Health Awareness, Occupational Health, Occupational Hazard.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.18311/jeoh%2F2020%2F25130