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Associations between birth registration and early child growth and development : evidence from 31 low- and middle-income countries

Jeong, Joshua and Bhatia, Amiya and Fink, Günther. (2018) Associations between birth registration and early child growth and development : evidence from 31 low- and middle-income countries. BMC Public Health, 18. p. 673.

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Abstract

Lack of legal identification documents can impose major challenges for children in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). The aim of this study was to investigate the association between not having a birth certificate and young children's physical growth and developmental outcomes in LMICs.; We combined nationally representative data from the Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys in 31 LMICs. For our measure of birth registration, primary caregivers reported on whether the child had a birth certificate. Early child outcome measures focused on height-for-age z-scores (HAZ), weight-for-age z-scores (WAZ), weight-for-height z-scores (WHZ), and standardized scores of the Early Childhood Development Index (ECDI) for a subsample of children aged 36-59 months. We used linear regression models with country fixed effects to estimate the relationship between birth registration and child outcomes. In fully adjusted models, we controlled for a variety of child, caregiver, household, and access to child services covariates, including cluster-level fixed effects.; In the total sample, 34.7% of children aged 0-59 months did not possess a birth certificate. After controlling for covariates, not owning a birth certificate was associated with lower HAZ (β = - 0.18; 95% CI: -0.23, - 0.14), WAZ (β = - 0.10, 95% CI: -0.13, - 0.07), and ECDI z-scores (β = - 0.10; 95% CI: -0.13, - 0.07) among children aged 36-59 months.; Our findings document links between birth registration and children's early growth and development outcomes. Efforts to increase birth registration may be promising for promoting early childhood development in LMICs.
Faculties and Departments:09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH)
09 Associated Institutions > Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Swiss TPH) > Department of Epidemiology and Public Health (EPH) > Household Economics and Health Systems Research > Household Economy (Fink)
UniBasel Contributors:Fink, Günther
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:BioMed Central
e-ISSN:1471-2458
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
Identification Number:
Last Modified:24 Aug 2018 09:27
Deposited On:03 Jul 2018 11:10

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