Short Birth Intervals Less than 2 Years Double Under-One Mortality in Ethiopia: Evidence from a Meta- Analysis
Introduction: Even though Ethiopia has been celebrating the achievements of MDG 4, still one in every 17 Ethiopian children dies before their first birthday. This is the biggest of the African regional average. Short birth interval has been inconsistently reported as a risk factor by limited and independent studies in Ethiopia. Therefore, the purpose of this meta-analysis was to determine the pooled effect of the preceding birth interval length on under- one mortality. Methods: Studies were accessed through the electronic web-based search mechanism from PUBMED, Advanced Google Scholar, WHO databases and journals: PLoS one, BMC using independent and combination of key terms. Comprehensive meta-analysis version 2 was used to analyze the data. An I2 test was used to assess heterogeneity. Publication bias was checked by using a funnel plot and the statistical significance by Egger’s test of the intercept. The final effect size was determined in the form of odds ratio by applying Duval and Tweedie's trim and fill analysis in the Random-effects model. Results: 872 studies were identified on the reviewed topic. During screening, forty five studies were found to be relevant for data abstraction. However, only five studies fulfilled the inclusion criteria and included in the analysis. In all of the studies included in the analysis, the preceding birth interval had a significant association with under-one mortality. The final pooled effect size in the form of the odds ratio for under one mortality with a preceding birth interval of less than 24 months was found to be 2.03(95%CI: 1.52, 2.70,random effect(five studies, n=43,909), I2=70%, P<0.05). Conclusion: In Ethiopia, promoting the length of birth interval to at least two years was associated with the reduction of under one mortality by 50% (95%CI: 35%, 63%). Endorsement of family planning services at postpartum period by improving access and quality is highly recommended.
Abel Fekadu Dadi,
Short Birth Intervals Less than 2 Years Double Under-One Mortality in Ethiopia: Evidence from a Meta- Analysis, Science Journal of Public Health.
Vol. 2, No. 6,
2014, pp. 589-595.
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