Mortality and Associated Factors among Children Born to Human Immunodeficiency Virus-infected Mothers in Public Hospitals in North Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia

Abera Shibru Tulu


Background: HIV has become one of the world’s most serious public health problems. Mother to child transmission of HIV/AIDS during pregnancy, deliver and breast feeding are major sources of HIV-infection in children. Without treatment, one third of children with HIV will die of AIDs before their first birthday; half of them die before celebrating their second birthday. Hence, assessing mortality and associated factors among children born to HIV-infected women is of paramount importance.Objective: To assess mortality and associated factors among children born to HIV-infected women in public Hospitals in North Gondar, Northwest Ethiopia.Methods: Institutional based cross-sectional study was conducted from March to May, 2013 in Public hospitals in North Gondar Zone. Data were collected from 422 HIV-positive mothers by face-to-face interview. The entire 422 younger child born from these mothers within five years were included in the study and analysis. Data were entered into Epi-Info and exported to SPSS for further analysis. Bivariate analysis was employed to see relationship between variables. Predictors having p–value ≤ 0.2 in bivariate analysis were included in the multivariate model. Odds ratios and their 95% confidence intervals were calculated. A p-value of ≤ 0.05 was considered as statistically significant in multivariate model.Results: Of the total 422 children, 292 [69.2%] were 24 months and above aged. The overall mortality was, 75 [17.8%]. Early age at weaning [AOR=5.16;95%CIs; 1.67-15.97], early age of child [AOR=67.51;95%CIs; 21.38-213.12], second and third birth order [AOR=8.32;95%CIs:2.62-26.44], fourth and above birth [AOR=17.43;95%CIs:3.86-78.71], preterm gestational age [AOR=4.32;95%CIs:1.01-18.42], having history of previous child loss [AOR=5.89;95%CIs:1.44-24.18], Child HIV test [AOR=7.14;95%CIs:2.79-18.28], mixed child feeding for the first six month [AOR=6.64]  were significantly associated with mortality of children.Conclusion: The prevalence of mortality was high among children born to HIV-infected mothers and it may indicate a hidden burden in children. Therefore, weaning child according to the WHO recommendations was good protector of child mortality.

Keywords: Mortality, HIV-infected, Weaning, child loss, North Gondar

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