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Semiparametric Multinomial Ordinal Model to Analyze Spatial Patterns of Child Birth Weight in Nigeria
Authors: Rasheed A. Adeyemi,Temesgen Zewotir, and Shaun Ramroop
Source: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 13: 1145; doi:10.3390/ijerph13111145
Topic(s): Birth weight
Spatial analysis
Country: Africa
Published: NOV 2016
Abstract: Background: Birth weight is an important health parameter for obstetricians and gynaecologists. It is a good health indicator of a child-bearing mother and a strong predictor of infant morbidity and mortality. Methods: This paper utilizes data on 28,647 children born between 2003–2008 obtained from the 2008 Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS). For a simple epidemiological convenience, the occurrence of a newborn weight can intuitively be considered to be categorical in nature and the thresholds can be put on a continuous scale. In survey reporting, the mothers frequently estimate their infant’s birth weight and make a classification in ordinal category (low, normal, large) instead of actual birth weight. The study fits a multinomial regression model to analyze the relationships between the polytomous response and different kind of covariates in a unified manner. We estimate the fixed effects of bio-social covariates parametrically and the non-linear effect modeled using P-spline. The spatial component was modeled using conditional autoregressive error. A penalized maximum likelihood estimation was performed to estimate the model parameters. Results: We found risk factors that are positively associated with low birth weight, which include multiple birth, short birth interval, death of sibling, childhood diarrhea, fever, mother’s smoking, firewood/dung cooking and poor household. Results further showed that iron syrup supplementation, antenatal attendance, mother literacy and household wealth had significant association with low probability of low birth weight. The finding also showed spatial patterns, which are not captured by the underlying determinants, and we produced probability predictive maps of the spatial residual effects. Conclusions: In addition to the statistical relevance of our method, the generated spatial maps identify highly endemic areas of low birth weight that can assist government agency to channel scarce health resources. A comprehensive approach which institutes a combination of interventions to improve the overall health care of the women is needed. Keywords: Nigeria; child birth size; cumulative multinomial model; penalized spline; spatial maps