Magadi, Monica, Agwanda, Alfred, Obare, Francis and Taffa, Negussie
Comparing maternal health indicators between teenagers and older women in sub-Saharan Africa: evidence from DHS. Southampton, UK, Southampton Statistical Sciences Research Institute, 35pp.
(S3RI Applications and Policy Working Papers, A03/18).
DHS data from 21 countries in sub-Saharan Africa are used to examine maternal health indicators among teenagers. A comparison is made between teenagers and older women, based on logistic regression analyses for individual countries and multilevel logistic analyses applied to merged data, controlling for the effect of socio-economic and demographic factors. Teenagers are found more likely to report unintended fertility (especially mistimed), receive inadequate antenatal care (start late and attend fewer visits), have non-facility delivery, and have a small baby at birth. However, teenagers are less likely to have had Caesarean section deliveries compared to older women. There are significant differences in maternal health indicators between countries but the observed pattern by maternal age does not vary significantly between countries, suggesting that these patterns are generalizable for the region. For teenagers with characteristics associated with higher Caesarean section or unwanted fertility rates, being in countries with overall higher risks of these outcomes particularly amplifies their chances of experiencing them.
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