Is there any association between parental education and child mortality? A study in a rural area of Bangladesh

T. Akter, D.M.E. Hoque, E.K. Chowdhury, M. Rahman, M. Russell, S.E. Arifeen

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22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objectives: To assess the association between parental education and under-five mortality, using the Integrated Management of Childhood Illness (IMCI) data from rural Bangladesh. It also investigated whether the association of parental education with under-five mortality had changed over time. Study design: This study was nested in the IMCI cluster randomized controlled trial. Methods: Participants considered for the analysis were all children aged under five years from the baseline (1995-2000) and the final (2002-2007) IMCI household survey. The analysis sample included 39,875 and 38,544 live births from the baseline and the final survey respectively. The outcome variable was under-five mortality and the exposure variables were mother's and father's education. Data were analysed with logistic regression. Results: In 2002-2007, the odds of the under-five mortality were 38% lower for the children with mother having secondary education, compared to the children with uneducated mother. For similar educational differences for fathers, at the same time period, the odds of the under-five mortality were 16% lower. The association of mother's education with under-five mortality was significantly stronger in 2002-2007 compared to 1995-2000. Conclusions: Mother's education appears to have a strong and significant association with under-five mortality, compared to father's education. The association of mother's education with under-five mortality appears to have increased over time. Our findings indicate that investing on girls' education is a good strategy to combat infant mortality in developing countries.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1602-1609
Number of pages8
JournalPublic Health
Volume129
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Bangladesh
  • Parental education
  • Under-five mortality

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