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Potential Determinants And Spatial Patterns Of Anemia Among Children Aged 6-59 Months In Namibia: A study on Demographic Health Survey 2013/2014 Cross-sectional Data
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Clinical Medicine, Epidemiology and Global Health.
2016 (English)Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Background: Anemia remains a major global public health concerns and it is highly prevalent in children in sub-Saharan Africa. Anemia in early age is reported to have adverse consequences on health and child development. Evidence is reported regarding the effects of different determinants of anemia among young children. No prior study has been found examining the association between anemia and different factors in Namibia despite a high prevalence of anemia that has been consistently high for the past decades.

Aims: This study aims at examining the association between anemia and possible determinants, and estimate prevalence of anemia among children aged 6-59 months in Namibia.

Methods: We used a cross-sectional, nationally representative data of the Namibia Demographic Health Survey (NDHS) done by WHO. Part of the survey, children aged 6-59 months were tested for anemia and measured for anthropometric data in the field by trained technicians and demographic data obtained from the mothers via interviews (n=1,537). Logistic regression models are used to examine the association between dependent variable anemia and the independent variables. The association are reported in odds ratio (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) with statistical significance set at 0.05.

 Results: The estimated prevalence of anemia is 49.6%, and in our adjusted analysis we discovered that poor household wealth increased the risk of anemia in children; poor quintile (OR=2.8; 95%CI 1.7-4.5) and poorest quintile (OR=2.2; 95%CI 1.3-3.7). It was less common to have anemia among girls (OR=0.8; 95%CI 0.6-0.9) than boys, and in older children. Age 24-35 months (OR=0.5; 95%CI 0.3-0-7), 36-47 months (OR=0.3; 95%CI 0.2-0.4) and 48-59 months (OR=0.2; 95%CI 0.1-0.3). In our analysis childhood anemia was not associated with place of residence, mothers’ education, vitamin A supplementation, intestinal parasite medicine and anthropometric indices.

Conclusion: Results from this analysis shows anemia is a severe public health issue in Namibia and suggests that poverty is a risk factor to anemia in children while older age and female sex have lower risk of anemia. Addressing poverty and improving nutritional status of younger children may have an important impact on reduction of anemia prevalence. Policies must prioritize anemia in children and further research is needed to examine more factors that can affect anemia in children.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. , 33 p.
Centre for Public Health Report Series, ISSN 1651-341x ; 2016:8
Keyword [en]
Anemia, children, 6-59 months, DHS, Namibia
National Category
Public Health, Global Health, Social Medicine and Epidemiology
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-125191OAI: diva2:963075
External cooperation
SAGE Data - Paul Kowal
Educational program
Master's Programme in Public Health
2016-05-23, Umeå Universitet, Umeå, 11:00 (English)
Available from: 2016-10-18 Created: 2016-09-07 Last updated: 2017-02-15Bibliographically approved

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