The authors declare that they have no competing interests.
All authors participated in conceptualizing the original assessment and designing the survey instrument. A. Demirchyan conceptualized the specific research questions, performed the analysis and drafted the manuscript. V. Petrosyan and M.E. Thompson substantially contributed to the interpretation of data and critically revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.
Self-rated health is a widely used health outcome measure that strongly correlates with physical and mental health status and predicts mortality. This study identified the set of predictors of fair/poor self-rated health in adult female and male populations of Armenia during a period of long-lasting socio-economic transition to a market economy.
Differences in self-rated health were analyzed along three dimensions: socioeconomic, behavioral/attitudinal, and psychosocial. The study utilized data from a 2006 nationwide household health survey that used a multi-stage probability proportional to size cluster sampling with a combination of interviewer-administered and self-administered surveys. Both female and male representatives of a household aged 18 and over completed the self-administered survey. Multivariate odds ratios (OR) for fair/poor self-rated health were calculated for different sets of variables and logistic regression models fitted separately for women and men to identify the determinants of fair/poor self-rated health.
Overall, 2310 women and 462 men participated in the survey. The rate of fair/poor self-rated health was 61.8% among women and 59.7% among men. For women, the set of independent predictors of fair/poor self-rated health included age, unemployment, poverty, low affordability of healthcare, depression, and weak social support. For men, the set included age, lower education, depression, weak social support, and drinking alcohol less than once a week. For both genders, depression and weak social support demonstrated the strongest independent association with fair/poor self-rated health.
The prevalence of fair/poor self-rated health was similar among men and women in this study, but the sets of independent predictors of perceived health differed somewhat, possibly, reflecting lifestyle differences between men and women in Armenia. Nevertheless, psychosocial variables were the strongest predictors of fair/poor self-rated health for both genders, indicating the importance of improving the country’s psychosocial environment through social reforms and poverty reduction.