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Spatial distribution and determinants of iron supplementation among pregnant women in Ethiopia: a spatial and multilevel analysis
Authors: Chilot Desta Agegnehu, Getayeneh Antehunegn Tesema, Achamyeleh Birhanu Teshale, Adugnaw Zeleke Alem, Yigizie Yeshaw, Sewnet Adem Kebede, and Alemneh Mekuriaw Liyew
Source: Archives of Public Health, Volume 79, Article number: 143; DOI:
Topic(s): Anemia
Maternal health
Spatial analysis
Country: Africa
Published: AUG 2021
Abstract: Maternal anemia continues as a global public health concern particularly in developing countries including Ethiopia. It is associated with an increased risk of maternal death, obstetric complications, preterm birth, and low birth weight. Even though maternal anemia is the commonest problem in Ethiopia, there is limited evidence on the spatial distribution and determinants of iron supplementation. Therefore, this study aimed to investigate the spatial distribution and determinants of iron supplementation among pregnant women in Ethiopia. A secondary data analysis was conducted based on the 2016 Ethiopian Demographic and Health Survey (EDHS) data. A total weighted sample of 7589 women was included for analysis. For the spatial analysis; ArcGIS version 10.6, and SaT Scan version 9.6 statistical software were employed to explore the spatial distribution, and to identify significant hotspot areas of iron supplementation in Ethiopia. For the determinant factors, multilevel logistic regression analysis was fitted to identify significant individual and community level determinants of iron supplementation. Deviance, Median Odds Ratio (MOR), and Intra-class Correlation Coefficient (ICC) were used for model comparison and for assessing model fitness. Variables with a p-value of less than 0.2 in the bivariable analysis were considered in the multivariable multilevel analysis. In the multivariable multilevel analysis, the Adjusted Odds Ratio (AOR) with 95% Confidence Interval (CI) was used to declare significant determinants of iron supplementation. The spatial distribution of iron supplementation was significantly varied across the country with Global Moran’s index value of 0.3 (p < 0.001). The SaTScan analysis identified a total of 271 significant clusters, of these 89 clusters were primary clusters located in the Southwest Somali and Central Oromia regions (LLR = 66.69, P < 0.001, RR = 1.35). ANC visit (AOR = 3.66, 95%CI: 3.21, 417), community education [AOR = 1.31, 95%CI, 1.07, 1.59), media exposure (AOR = 1.33, 95%CI: 1.15, 1.53), distance to health facility (AOR = 1.32, 95%CI: 1.16, 1.50), region and household wealth index were statistically significant determinant factors of iron supplementation. Iron supplementation among pregnant women were significantly varied across the country. Therefore, the finding of this study could help to design effective public health interventions targeting areas with low iron supplementation and maternal health services should be delivered in all areas of our country. Besides, public health programs should enhance iron supplementation through promoting ANC visits, media exposure, and giving special emphasis to marginalized and remote areas.