Health Care for Monks in a Muang District, Nakon Ratchasrima: What are the Health Needs of Monks?
Keywords:Monk, Monks’ health, Health needs
Introduction: Monks are a population at risk of health problems. Sustainable health enhancement in monks requires well-rounded perspectives from stakeholders. However, those perspectives are unclear.
Objectives: 1) to examine monks’ needs based on predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors; 2) to propose policy recommendations for monk’s health care in Muang District, Nakon Ratchasrima province.
Methodology: The study design was QUAN-QUAL mdel (Triangulation Mixed Design). Samples in a quantitative study were 379 monks in Muang District, Nakon Ratchasrima province, and the participants in a qualitative study were 30 stakeholders. Data were collected using a questionnaire, in-depth and focus-group interview guides, and an observation form. Quantitative data were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Qualitative data were analyzed using content analysis.
Results: The study revealed that 1) monks had health knowledge in a middle level and requested for health education which periodically provided at their temple; 2) monks reported an overall good health behaviors, except for smoking, and consuming foods which contained high sugar and fat; 3) temple environment could help to promote monks’ health, however, animal carriers elimination and elderly restrooms were needed; 4) monks still had limitations in health information access; 5) Buddhist folds mainly help monks only with food preparation; and 6) monks satisfied with public health services in a middle level and they asked for specific improvement concerning on monastic disciplines. These findings could generate policy recommendations in 4 aspects: monks, healthcare providers, Buddhists, and health system management.
Conclusion: The enhancement of monk’s healthcare in Muang District, Nakon Ratchasrima province needs to emphasize problematic predisposing, enabling, and reinforcing factors.
Implication: Those responsible for monks’ health should employ the findings from this study to improve monk-related healthcare in their areas with area-context adjustment.
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