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Correlates of gender characteristics, health and empowerment of women in Ethiopia
Authors: Yishak Abraham Lailulo, A Sathiya Susuman, and Renette Blignaut
Source: BMC Women's Health, 15:116; DOI: 10.1186/s12905-015-0273-3
Topic(s): Family planning
Wealth Index
Women's health
Women’s empowerment
Country: Africa
Published: DEC 2015
Abstract: Background The low status of women prevents them from recognizing and voicing their concerns about health needs. This study aimed to examine the relationship between gender characteristics, health and empowerment of women in an attempt to understand between 2005 and 2011. Methods Data from the Ethiopia Demographic and Health Survey (EDHS) 2005 and 2011 were used. Bivariate and multivariate analyses were used to determine the relative contribution of the predictor variables. The hypotheses tested in this study were that gender (men and women), health and empowerment of women in region are highly significant with women’s education and work status. Results Study findings showed that the low status of women and their disempowerment are highly associated with poor health outcomes. In both 2005 and 2011 men school ages were positively associated with their attainment in primary education, whereas for women it was negatively related with their attainment in some education. In both 2005 and 2011 women in the richest wealth quintile had the highest odds ratio of relating to some education. The results show that the odds ratios of women with some education (within the richest wealth quintile) has improved from 6.39 (in 2005) to 10.90 (in 2011), whereas among men there has been a decrease from 10.33 (in 2005) to 2.13 (in 2011). The results indicated that in 2005 and 2011, when comparing the percentage distribution of both genders on employment status and type of occupation, the percentage of men who were employed was higher than women. The percentage of males who were engaged in the agricultural-type of occupation was higher than that of women. Men and women knowledge about family planning methods have been improved, yet, there are wider gender gaps in family planning users. Conclusions The officials such as policy makers, planners, program managers and government and non-government organizations need to addressed. The issue of child marriages in order to minimize the number of girls who never attend school or drop out to become wives Planners should also work on improving family planning to empower women. There was a significant relationship between status of women and quality of healthy life, and this relationship appeared to differ by education and work status. Keywords Women empowerment – Health seeking behaviour – Occupation – Early child marriage – Wealth index – Family planning