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Examining the Effect of Geographic Region of Residence on Childhood Malnutrition in Uganda
Authors: Prince M Amegbor, and Ortis Yankey
Source: Journal of Tropical Pediatrics, Published online; DOI: 10.1093/tropej/fmaa019
Topic(s): Child health
Country: Africa
Published: AUG 2020
Abstract: Objectives In our study, we examine how geographic region of residence may predict childhood malnutrition, expressed as stunting, wasting and underweight, among children under the age of 5 years in Uganda. Methods Using data from the 2016 Uganda Demographic and Health Survey, we performed an incremental multivariate multilevel mixed-effect modelling to examine the effect of a child, parental and household factors on the association between region of residence and each indicator of childhood malnutrition. Results Approximately 28%, 3% and 9% of children under age 5 suffered from stunting, wasting and underweight, respectively. The bivariate result shows that the proportion of children suffering from stunting and underweight was relatively lower in the Kampala region compared with the other regions. With the exception of the Northern region (6.44%), wasting was higher (4.12%) among children in the Kampala region. Children in the other regions were more likely to experience stunting and underweight. When controlling for child, parent and household factors, children in the other regions were less likely to suffer from underweight and stunting, compared with those in Kampala region. Children in the other regions, except the Northern region, were less likely to be wasted compared with those in Kampala region. Conclusion Our finding suggests that child, parental and household characteristics have effects on the association between region of residence and childhood malnutrition. Addressing individual and household socioeconomic disparities may be vital in tackling regional differences in childhood malnutrition.