Understanding the factors related to subjective well-being in the TB population: The South African perspective
Fifty percent of the world’s tuberculosis population is found in eight countries, one of which is South Africa. Of the eight countries, South Africa is said to be experiencing the highest burden of Tuberculosis, with an estimated incidence of three hundred and twenty-two thousand cases of active Tuberculosis. The Tuberculosis epidemic is driven by the following reasons, firstly poor living conditions which are a result of the wide gap between the rich and the poverty-stricken among some populations, and secondly late presentation to health facilities. Over the years, healthcare programs have made a meaningful impact in identifying patients presenting for Tuberculosis care, a global Tuberculosis report shows an estimated fifty-eight million lives were saved through Tuberculosis treatment and diagnosis, between the years 2000 and 2018. However, strategies to modify risk behaviour need to remain a main priority. In the South African context, it would be important to note the diversity of the individuals experience which is rooted in South African socio-political history and has resulted in high levels of social inequality and disparate socio-economic status groups, as a significant factor when considering the well-being of Tuberculosis infected South Africans. For policy makers to make data-driven decisions, with the aim of lessening the disease burden experienced by the populations they serve. They would require insights from an individual level, this way of measuring well-being requires the participants to rely on their own cognitive judgements and emotional reactions to characterize their well-being. Alatartseva and Barysheva in 2015 claim that subjective well-being is an internal evaluation of well-being, relating to one’s spiritual, personal characteristics and features. This approach is fitting since behavioural data is dynamic and relative as it tends to differ across populations and is often altered radically in short periods. Despite global advances in access to Tuberculosis treatment, Tuberculosis is the leading cause of death in adults with Human Immunodeficiency Virus and the main contributor to antimicrobial resistance. This gap can be bridged by an understanding of the behavioural aspects tied to Tuberculosis infection. There is a lack of adequate South African literature on Tuberculosis infection and health related well-being. The current study notes and compares, the diversity of life satisfaction experience between participants from different socio-demographic status groups across South Africa, bringing forth the most influential variables on well-being. This paper explored the possible factors of subjective well-being in the Tuberculosis infected South African population. Data from the National Income Dynamics Study 2017 was used, with a focus on the Tuberculosis diagnosed sub-population across all nine provinces in South Africa. The study sample consisted of forty-four individuals who were measured against the following variables: age; gender; population group; place of residence in 1994; labour market participation, education; health; emotional health and well-being and social cohesion. The study employed, Multiple Correspondence Analysis to identify significant variables associated with the well-being of Tuberculosis infected individuals. The results show that the participants of African lineage presented with the lowest level of subjective well-being, followed by the Coloured population which was more likely to have a smoking habit to further decrease their level of well-being. Gender was a significant contributor to well-being with female participants reporting an overall lower level of subjective well-being compared to their male counterpart. Furthermore, those co-infected with Tuberculosis and Human immunodeficiency Virus while poverty-stricken presented with the lowest possible level as they are likely to be depressed, have a weakened immune system and experiencing medication non-adherence.