Predictors of Nutritional Status and Mortality of Children in Southern Ethiopia

Fikadu Reta Alemayehu


Ethiopia is one of the poorest nations in the world with high prevalence of child mortality and under nutrition. Despite progress made in reducing stunting among children in the nation, child malnutrition and deaths are still high. In addition to the deep rooted poverty, recurrent drought and crop failures did aggravate the situation and international interventions were primarily targeted at provision of emergency food aid which couldn’t solve the problem in the long run. However, during the past decade, Ethiopia did attained significant economic development. The growing economy is expected contribute to reduction in child under nutrition and mortality. Yet, limited studies have been done reporting specific magnitude of child under nutrition and mortality across regions in the nation.   Therefore, there is a need to assess current level of child death and under nutrition as well as possible predictors of the problem. In this study, we conducted household survey together with anthropometric measurement of mothers and children in a remote drought prone farming community in Oromiya region of Southern Ethiopia. Results of our study indicated high prevalence of child under nutrition in the study area. We also found sever problem of drinking water in the study area. In addition, diarrhoea and child deaths were also widespread. Such factors like age of children, nutritional status of mothers, and number of child births, household economic status and polygamy appear to predict nutritional status and deaths of children. Thus, we conclude that more efforts need to be done to meet development needs of marginal communities so that  the problem of child under nutrition and mortality can be addressed in the nation.

Keywords: Anthropometry, Child Death, under nutrition, Southern Ethiopia

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3208 ISSN (Online)2225-093X

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