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Trends and Factors Associated with Under-5 Mortality in Northwest Nigeria (2008–2018)
Authors: Osita K. Ezeh , Anastasia O. Odumegwu, Gladys H. Oforkansi, Uchechukwu D. Abada, Felix A. Ogbo, Piwuna C. Goson, Tanko Ishaya, Kingsley E. Agho
Source: Annals of Global Health, Volume 88, issue 1; DOI:
Topic(s): Birth interval
Childhood mortality
Children under five
Spatial analysis
Country: Africa
Published: JUL 2022
Abstract: Background: The Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) revealed that the under-five mortality rate (U5MR) in the northwest geopolitical zone (NWGZ), Nigeria, increased by 1.1% from 185 to 187 deaths per 1,000 live births between 2013 and 2018, indicating a setback to the previously reported modest improvement in U5MR. Objectives: This study sought to examine trends and factors related to under-5 mortality (U5M) in NWGZ from 2008 to 2018. Methods: A combined NWGZ dataset extracted from the 2008, 2013 and 2018 NDHSs, with a sample of 32,015 singleton live births, including 3,745 under-5 deaths, was used. The U5MRs for each survey year and potential independent factors were obtained using the STATA “syncrmrates” command, and then the trends were examined. A logistic regression generalised linear latent and mixed model was used to explore the potential factors associated with U5M in NWGZ. Findings: In NWGZ, the U5MR declined by only 8.2% (from 195 to 179 per 1,000 live births between 2008 and 2018, respectively), with a similar trend observed among its seven states. Multivariable analyses indicated that maternal education (no formal or primary education), maternal non-use of contraception, a mother’s perception of the baby being small or very small, birth order (second to fourth or higher) with a shorter birth interval (=2 years), younger or older maternal age (<20 years or =40 years old) and rural residence were significantly associated with U5M in NWGZ. Conclusion: Interventional initiatives including educating mothers on the benefits of contraceptive use, child spacing, kangaroo mother care of small-sized babies and promoting regular check-ups for older mothers will substantially reduce U5M in NWGZ.