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The Relationship between Infectious Diseases and Housing Maintenance in Indigenous Australian Households

1
Krieger School of Arts and Sciences, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
2
Institute for Sustainable Futures, University of Technology Sydney, Sydney 2007, Australia
3
School of Public Health, The University of Queensland, Brisbane 4006, Australia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15(12), 2827; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph15122827
Received: 19 November 2018 / Revised: 2 December 2018 / Accepted: 5 December 2018 / Published: 11 December 2018
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Abstract

This research aimed to identify systemic housing-level contributions to infectious disease transmission for Indigenous Australians, in response to the Government program to ‘close the gap’ of health and other inequalities. A narrative literature review was performed in accordance to PRISMA guidelines. The findings revealed a lack of housing maintenance was associated with gastrointestinal infections, and skin-related diseases were associated with crowding. Diarrhoea was associated with the state of food preparation and storage areas, and viral conditions such as influenza were associated with crowding. Gastrointestinal, skin, ear, eye, and respiratory illnesses are related in various ways to health hardware functionality, removal and treatment of sewage, crowding, presence of pests and vermin, and the growth of mould and mildew. The research concluded that infectious disease transmission can be reduced by improving housing conditions, including adequate and timely housing repair and maintenance, and the enabling environment to perform healthy behaviours. View Full-Text
Keywords: housing; health; Australia; aboriginal peoples; infectious diseases; maintenance and repair; crowding; policy; remote communities housing; health; Australia; aboriginal peoples; infectious diseases; maintenance and repair; crowding; policy; remote communities
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Ali, S.H.; Foster, T.; Hall, N.L. The Relationship between Infectious Diseases and Housing Maintenance in Indigenous Australian Households. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2018, 15, 2827.

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