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Determinants of stunting among children under age five in Burundi: Evidence from the 2016–2017 Burundi Demographic and Health Survey (BDHS 2016–17)
Authors: Manuel L. Gaiser, Andrea S. Winkler, Stefanie J. Klug, Sandra Nkurunziza & Dominik Stelzle
Source: Food Science and Nutrition, 11
Topic(s): Children under five
Country: Africa
Published: MAY 2023
Abstract: Burundi has one of the highest prevalence of stunting in the world. This study aimed to identify determinants of stunting among children under age five in Burundi. A total of 4993 children with anthropometric measurements from the 2016–2017 Burundi Demographic and Health Survey were included in the study. Stunting was assessed from the height-for-age Z-scores (HAZ). Logistic regression models were analyzed to identify demographic, maternal, child-related, and structural variables that influence stunting. In total, 56.9% of children under age five were stunted, of those 31.0% moderately and 25.9% severely. Multivariable logistic regression indicated that older children, male children (adjusted OR (aOR)?=?1.41, 95% CI 1.24–1.61), and children who were perceived as small (aOR?=?2.00, 95% CI 1.55–2.59) or very small at birth (aOR?=?2.37, 95% CI 1.57–3.59) were significantly more likely to be stunted. Moreover, children of single mothers, with lower levels of education, who were underweight at the time of the survey (aOR?=?1.95, 95% CI 1.42–2.68), who had short stature (aOR?=?3.76, 95% CI 2.50–5.66) or who conceived more than four children (aOR?=?1.22, 95% CI 1.05–1.42) were more commonly stunted. Stunting was more prevalent in rural areas (aOR?=?2.53, 95% CI 1.72–3.73) and in households with no access to improved types of toilet facilities (aOR?=?1.27, 95% CI 1.10–1.45). The results of this study show that the prevalence of stunting in children under age five in Burundi is alarmingly high and underscores the urgent need for decisive and determined action.