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Inequitable coverage of vitamin A supplementation in Nigeria and implications for childhood blindness
Authors: Ada E. Aghaji, Roseline Duke, and Ugochukwu C. W. Aghaji
Source: BMC Public Health, 19(1): 1-8; DOI: 10.1186/s12889-019-6413-1
Topic(s): Child health
Health equity
Vitamin A
Country: Africa
Published: MAR 2019
Abstract: Abstract Background Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) is of major public health significance; it is a risk factor for childhood deaths from diarrhoea and measles in low and middle-income countries and an important cause of preventable childhood blindness in low income countries. Vitamin A supplementation (VAS) is being implemented in many LMICs and high coverage reduces the prevalence of blinding corneal diseases in children. However, national estimates of coverage may not reveal any inequities in intra country coverage. The aim of this study is to assess factors influencing VAS coverage and also assess the relationship between VAS coverage and childhood corneal blindness in Nigeria. Methods Data were collected from the Nigeria Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) 2013 and the published literature on population-based childhood blindness surveys in Nigeria. The main outcome measure was the proportion of eligible children who received VAS in the last 6?months preceding the survey. Study factors comprised a range of socioeconomic, and individual factors. Data were analysed using STATA V.12.1 (Statcorp, Texas). To explore the effects of the independent variables on VAS coverage, bivariate and multivariate regression was done. Variables with p