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Table 1 Definition and categories of variables

From: Skin infection, housing and social circumstances in children living in remote Indigenous communities: testing conceptual and methodological approaches

Variable Description and categories
Outcome variable
Skin infection incidence rate (person-year) For each child aged under seven years, data on presentations to the health centre for skin infections (scabies and/or bacterial infection) were collected through an audit of health centre records for the one year period preceding the survey. Any record in the clinical notes indicating a diagnosis of scabies, impetigo or infected skin sores was counted as an episode, except if the record was within seven days of an earlier diagnosis of the same condition.
Primary explanatory variables
Housing condition, materials and design
Facilities for washing children not functioning 1. For child <1 year: (i) bathroom basin, hot tap, cold tap, bench, door, electrical and general structure are all functioning, or (ii) kitchen sink, hot tap and cold tap all functioning.
2. For child aged 1 to <3 years: (i) laundry trough, hot tap, cold tap, shelf, electricity, floor drainage and general structure are all functioning, or (ii) the bathroom shower head, hot tap, cold tap, drainage, bench, electrical and general structure are all functioning.
3. For child aged 3 to less than 7 years: bathroom shower head, hot tap, cold tap, drainage, bench, door, electrical and general structure are all functioning. Facilities not functioning versus facilities functioning (reference).
Facilities for washing clothes and bedding not functioning 1. Laundry trough, hot tap, cold tap, shelf, electricity, floor drainage and general structure all functioning.
Facilities not functioning versus facilities functioning (reference).
Facilities for removing human faeces not functioning 1. If child <1 year: toilet pan, cistern, water supply, drainage, bathroom basin and hot and cold taps are all functioning.
2. If child aged 1 to <3 years: child toilet equipment (e.g. potty – small plastic toilet), toilet pan, cistern, water supply, drainage, electricity, general structure, bathroom basin and hot and cold taps are all functioning.
3. If child aged 3 to less than 7 years: toilet door, electricity, general structure, toilet pan, cistern, water supply, drainage, bathroom basin, hot tap and cold tap are all functioning.
Facilities not functioning versus facilities functioning (reference).
Combined HLPs Failed at least one of the three healthy living practices previously defined
Concrete/other floor material (no tiles) Observed by surveyor. The floor type for the main living areas (kitchen and living room) of dwellings were categorised according to (1) concrete, (2) tiles, (3) other, (4)concrete and tiles, (5) concrete and other, and (6) tiles and other. The variable was then dichotomised to reflect the contrast between dwellings that have concrete/other flooring versus those that have tiles (reference).
Dwelling built pre 1980 As reported by community housing office or experienced government housing program staff. Older dwellings (pre 1980) versus newer dwellings (reference).
Secondary explanatory variables
Community A Community A versus Community B (reference).
Hygiene condition of dwelling environment and immediate surrounds  
Internal contaminants present Presence of obvious organic contaminants observed by surveyor in the dwelling (e.g. faecal contamination (disposable nappies), food scraps, etc.) versus no contaminants (reference).
External contaminants present Presence of obvious organic contaminants observed by surveyor on the sealed surrounds (i.e. veranda) of the dwelling versus no contaminants (reference).
Household cleaning software
Household cleaning equipment missing Observed by surveyor. At least one of the broom, mop or bucket absent (as observed by the surveyor) versus dwellings with all items present (reference).
No soap in dwelling Observed by surveyor. No soap around the bathroom, kitchen or laundry sinks versus soap present (reference).
Child and carer socio-demographic factors
Child age less than 3 years Reported by carer and date of birth verified against health centre audit (health centre records used as true age). Child less than 3 years versus child 3 to less than 7 years (reference).
Child sex (male) Reported by carer. Child sex male versus female (reference).
Carer age Reported by carer. Categorised into three dummy variables: carer less than 20 years, carer 20 to 34 years (reference), and carer 35 plus years.
Low family income Family income per week as reported by the primary carer. Low family income (less than median family income ($935) for the two communities) versus greater than median family income (reference).
Carer highest education Highest formal qualification as reported by the carer. Categorised to three dummy variables. Grades 11 and 12 (reference), grades 9 and 10, and grade 8 and below.
Carer unemployed Reported by carer. Employed refers to any employment including CDEP (a type of 'work-for-the-dole' scheme). Carer unemployed versus carer employed (reference).
Household composition
Four or more children aged less than 7 years in the dwelling Number of children less than 7 years usually resident in the dwelling (at least 6 out of 12 months) as reported by householder and primary carer. Four or more children less than 7 years in dwelling versus less than 4 children (reference).
Three carers' in dwelling Reported by householder and carer. Only the main carer of each child was counted (i.e. variable refers to number of carers of different children). Three carers in dwelling versus one or two carers' in dwelling (reference).
Crowding: Residents per bedroom Number of residents (includes visitors) reported by householder and carer. Number of bedrooms based on dwelling survey. Categorised into three dummy variables. Two persons or less per bedroom (reference), greater than two to four or less persons per bedroom, and greater than 4 persons per bedroom.
Child mobility (high) Reported by carer whether child sleeps at another dwelling at least one night in ten (or 10%). Child mobility high versus low mobility (reference).
Presence of a visitor in the dwelling Reported by householder and carer. A visitor was defined as anyone who is not a usual resident who is currently staying at the dwelling for at least one week. Visitor(s) present versus no visitors (reference).