EFFECT OF SOCIAL CAPITAL ON THE HEALTH STATUS OF RURAL FARMERS IN GWER-EAST LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA, BENUE STATE, NIGERIA
Keywords:Social capital, Self-assessed, Health Status, Farmers
The study examined the effect of social capital on the health status of rural farmers in Gwer East local government area of Benue State, Nigeria. Multi-stage sampling technique was used to select a total of 120 respondents. Data were collected through the use of a well-structured questionnaire and analyzed using descriptive statistics, social capital index, the index was estimated from the different forms of social capital constructed and WHO self-assessment scale for health status. Also, Binary Logit regression model was used. Results showed that the farmers were still young with an average age of 41 years old. Most of the respondents (68.33%) were married and more than half, (60.83%) were males. The social network of the respondents showed that the density of membership with mean of 1.43, average meeting attendance 44.83%, cash contribution with mean of N36,103.33, labour contribution with mean of 7.86, participation in decision making with mean of 34%, heterogeneity index with mean of 44%, social capital index with mean of 0.31. The health status of the respondents showed that majority (41.67%) were in very good health status. The regression Pseudo R2 value of 0.5733 indicates that the variables included in the model explained 57% of the dependent variable. The result revealed that social capital increases the probability of household head being healthy. Also, gender, household size, farming experience, and age significantly influenced health status of the respondents. Given the close linkages between self-rated health and social capital in this study, the study, therefore, concluded that, social capital positively and significantly influences health status in the study area.
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