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American Journal of Public Health Research. 2018, 6(3), 139-147
DOI: 10.12691/ajphr-6-3-3
Open AccessArticle

Effect of Maternal Education, Early Marriage and Prenatal Care on Child Undernutrition in Ethiopia

Worke Gete Alemayehu1,

1Department of Biology, College of Natural and Computational Science, Metu University

Pub. Date: May 04, 2018

Cite this paper:
Worke Gete Alemayehu. Effect of Maternal Education, Early Marriage and Prenatal Care on Child Undernutrition in Ethiopia. American Journal of Public Health Research. 2018; 6(3):139-147. doi: 10.12691/ajphr-6-3-3


Studies done before identified that children in developing countries suffered from consistent undernutrition problem. This study identified the effect of maternal education, prenatal care and early marriage on child undernutrition problems in the four dominant regional states of Ethiopia (Tigray, Amhara, Oromia and SNNP). The study considered the four nationally representative demographic and health survey data collected by the World Bank in 2000, 2005, 2011 and 2016. The child undernutrition problems (stunting, underweight and wasted) computed based on the standardized index developed by the World Health Organization. On average 47.55%, 39.22% and 9.34% of the sample children in the four round surveys were stunted, underweight and wasted, respectively. Sample children from Amhara regional state had severe stunting and underweight problems as compared to the other regional states of the country. The logit model result revealed that experienced and educated mothers have significant effect of reducing the child undernutrition in Ethiopia. Children from mothers with age interval of 35-45 years and graduated from secondary and/or high school have strong probability of being free from stunted, underweight and wasted in the country. The model result also shows that children with an average or more birth weight have lower probability of suffering from childhood undernutrition. Additionally, the study found that children from rural areas have strong prevalence for undernutrition as compared to the urban ones. In connection to this, the household wealth quintals have significant effect on child undernutrition, wherein children from rich family have lower probability of prevalence to stunting and underweight. Finally, the study recommended that the concerned part should work on expanding mother’s education, prenatal care and awareness of rural households to reduce the national level child undernutrition problem significantly.

undernutrition maternal education birth weight prenatal care Ethiopia

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