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Adjusted Effects of Domestic Violence, Tobacco use, and Indoor Air Pollution from Use of Solid Fuel on Child Mortality
Authors: Shanta Pandey, Yuan Lin
Source: Maternal and Child Health Journal, 2012 Oct 13. [Epub ahead of print], DOI: 10.1007/s10995-012-1163-z
Topic(s): Childhood mortality
Domestic violence
Tobacco use
Country: Asia
Published: OCT 2012
Abstract: Studies that have separately examined the consequences of gender based violence upon women, use of solid fuel for cooking, and mother and father’s use of tobacco on child health have concluded that they serve as risk factors for maternal and child health. Some authors have implied that these studies may have run the risk of overestimating the burden of disease of one factor over another. In this paper, we included all four factors in the same model to estimate their adjusted effects on child mortality, controlling for the demographic factors. The data come from 2005 to 2006 National Family Health Survey of India that interviewed a nationally representative sample of 39,257 couples. Of the four factors, mothers’ use of tobacco presented the highest risk for child mortality (OR = 1.42; CI = 1.27–1.60) followed by fathers’ use of tobacco (OR = 1.23; CI = 1.12–1.36), households’ use of solid fuel for cooking (OR = 1.23; CI = 1.06–1.43), and physical abuse upon mothers (OR = 1.20; CI = 1.10–1.32). Among the households that used solid fuel for cooking, improved cookstoves users experienced 28 % lower odds of child mortality (OR = 0.72; CI = 0.61–0.86) compared to nonusers of improved cookstoves. Additionally, increase in age of mothers at birth of first child, parents’ education, and household wealth served as protective factors for child mortality. To prevent child death, programs should focus on reducing couple’s use of tobacco, protecting women from physical abuse, and helping households switch from solid to liquid fuel. Moreover, a significant reduction in child death could be attained by improving girls’ education, and delaying their age at marriage and first birth.