Projection of infant mortality rate in Malaysia using R

Nurhasniza Idham Hasan, Azlan Abdul Aziz, Mogana Darshini Ganggayah, Nur Faezah Jamal, Nor Mariyah Abdul Ghafar

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Projecting future infant mortality rate (IMR) is an important subject in ensuring the stability of health in one nation or a specific region in general. Secondary data of IMR from December 1950 until December 2020 from United Nations- World Population Prospects were used to project the trend of IMR in Malaysia up to 2023. In this study, five different forecasting models were adopted including Mean model, Naïve model, Autoregressive Integrated Moving Average (ARIMA) model, Exponential State Space model and Neural Network model. The results were analyzed using RStudio. The out-sample forecasts of mortality rates were evaluated using six error measures namely, Mean Error (ME), Root Mean Square Error (RMSE), Mean Absolute Error (MAE), Mean Percentage Error (MPE), Mean Absolute Percentage Error (MAPE) and Mean Absolute Scaled Error (MASE). Consequently, the keen analysis was focused on the trend and projection of infant mortality rate in the future using the most accurate model. The results showed that the “win” model for this study is ARIMA (0,2,0) model. The model provided a consistent estimate of IMR in relation to a similar decreasing pattern as shown by the original data and hence a reliable projection of IMR. The three ahead forecast values showed that IMR is likely to keep on continuously decreasing in the future. This study could become a guideline for human resource management and health care allocation planning. A forecast of IMR can help the implementation of interventions to reduce the burden of infant mortality within the target range.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-36
Number of pages14
JournalJurnal Sains Kesihatan Malaysia (Malaysian Journal of Health Sciences)
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • statistics
  • health informatics

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