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Table 1 Variables relating to malaria risk factors for Batwa and non-Batwa communities in Kanungu District, Uganda

From: Plasmodium falciparum malaria parasitaemia among indigenous Batwa and non-indigenous communities of Kanungu district, Uganda

Construct Description Variable Justification
Dependent variable
 Malaria parasitaemia (P. falciparum) Positive RDT July 2013
Positive RDT April 2014
Dichotomous (ever positive/never positive) RDTs are a widely accepted method of malaria detection and may outperform microscopy in some settings [4, 8082]
Independent variables
 Ethnicity Survey date Dichotomous dummy variable (Batwa/non-Batwa) Indigenous populations and ethnic minorities have been identified in the literature as being more vulnerable to malaria [1418]
 Livestock ownership Household ownership of animals (any) Dichotomous (yes/no) Livestock have been associated with increases in malaria prevalence through zoopotentiation [25, 38], and decreases in prevalence through zooprophylaxis [76, 77, 83] and wealth [26, 33]
Control variables
  Sex Observed sex of participant Dichotomous (male/female) Sex is associated with increased risk due to variations in exposure through livelihood or household activities [23, 24]
  Age Self-reported age of participant Continuous (years) Children, in areas of high transmission, are more vulnerable to infection than adults due to a lack of acquired immunity [10, 20, 21]
  Malaria-related knowledge Question: What is the best way to prevent malaria? Dichotomous dummy variable based on correct identification of avoiding mosquito bites. Understanding malaria transmission is associated with preventive behaviours [10, 84, 85]
  Bed net use Question: Does your household own a mosquito net? Dichotomous (yes/no) Insecticide treated and untreated bed nets are associated with significant reductions in malaria prevalence [21, 84, 85]
  Wealth Question: Does your household have any of the following items? Dichotomous dummy variable based on categorization of PCA of variables: cell phone, radio, bicycle, electricity, private latrine, hand washing facilities, remittance, land (lowest 50 % of scores/highest 50 % of scores) Wealth is associated with access to malaria prevention and health care [10, 31, 84, 85]
  House construction Question: What is your roof made of? Dichotomous (iron sheets/wood or thatch or banana fibre) Wall materials, open eaves, and window coverings can facilitate vector entry into the home [24, 28, 29]
  Animals kept inside at night Question: If you own animals, do your animals come into the house during the night? Dichotomous dummy variable (yes/no) Zooprophylaxis/zoopotentiation may be determined by relative proximity of animals to human sleeping quarters [29, 8688]