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Determinants of spousal physical violence against women in Zambia: a multilevel analysis
Authors: Million Phiri, Sibongile Namayawa, Bruce Sianyeuka, Palver Sikanyiti and Musonda Lemba
Source: BMC Public Health, 23
Topic(s): Data models
Gender-based violence (GBV)
Intimate Partner Violence (IPV)
Women's health
Country: Africa
Published: MAY 2023
Abstract: Background: Violence against women and girls is a major public health issue, a violation of human rights, and is linked to a number of harmful effects on one’s physical, mental, sexual, and reproductive health. Studies conducted in other parts of sub-Saharan Africa (SSA) suggest that there is an association between contextual factors and experience of intimate partner violence. However, in Zambia, this association is not well documented. Thus, this study was conducted to examine how individual and community-level characteristics influence spousal violence against women in Zambia. Methods: Data from the most recent Zambia Demographic and Health Survey conducted in 2018 was used. A sample of 7,358 ever-married women aged 15–49 years was used in the analysis. Two level multilevel binary logistic regression models were employed to examine the association between individual and contextual-level factors and experience of spousal violence. Results: The prevalence of spousal physical violence against women in Zambia was 21.1% [95% CI, 19.8, 22.5]. Women aged 15–19 [aOR?=?2.36, 95% CI?=?1.34–4.14] and 20–24 [aOR?=?2.11, 95% CI?=?1.38–3.22], who did not own mobile phone [aOR?=?1.36, 95% CI?=?1.10–1.69], and had low decision-making autonomy [aOR?=?1.24, 95% CI?=?1.01–1.54] were more likely experience spousal physical violence. Furthermore, communities which had a low proportion of women with decision making power [aOR?=?1.66, 95% CI?=?1.26–2.19] were more likely experience spousal physical violence. Additionally, women whose partners’ drank alcohol [aOR?=?2.81, 95% CI?=?2.30–3.45] and those whose partners exhibited jealous behaviour [aOR?=?2.38, 95% CI?=?1.88–3.21] were more likely to experience spousal physical violence. Conclusion: Both individual and community-level factors influenced spousal physical violence in Zambia. Integrating community level factors when designing interventions to address gender-based would be key to reduce women’s vulnerability to gender-based violence in the country. There is need to re-evaluate and re-strategize current strategies being implemented to address gender-based violence in the country to make them context specific.