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Behavioral Risk Factors among Omani hajjis during the hajj season 1432H/2011G.


Mina is a holy place where more than 2 million hajjis camp for at least 3 days during the annual pilgrimages to Makkah (Hajj). The objectives of the study were to estimate the health related to behavioral risk factors (BRF) among Omani hajjis during Hajj 1432H (2011 G), to study the relationship of these BRF with certain demographic characteristics and to estimate self reported health problems among Omani hajjis.


A cross-sectional survey was conducted among hajjis while staying in Mina using a self-administered questionnaire. Random cluster sampling technique was used based on geographical mapping.


Out of 500 respondents, 73.6% were male, the mean age of hajjis was 39.05 year, and 59.2% were performing Hajj for the first time. Of all the Hajjis, 8.6% transported between holy places on foot and another 91.4% transported using both vehicles and walking. 67.8% of the hajjes slept less than 6 hours in the last 24 hours. After Arafat, 62.8% of male hajjis had their heads shaved with razor blades, 45.6% cut or shaved their head by a professional barber, while among them zero percent used razor blades which was used by other hajjis. Among all hajjis the proportions of hajjis who were suffering from acute or chronic problems were 66% and 17.2% respectively. Among hajjis with chronic diseases, 72.1% brought their needed medication with them. Only 61.6% of hajjis had valid meningococcal meningitis vaccinations.


This study showed improvement in some of the hajjis health behaviors i.e. increase in proportion of hajjis who ate cooked food supplied by hamla and drank sealed water, were vaccinated against influenza, and used face mask during hajj. However the study showed some results that should attract more attention like low proportion of hajjis who have valid influenza vaccinations, and had their hair cut by professional barbers. Also the study showed high proportion of hajjis had acute medical problems.