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Table 2 Bivariate analysis of childhood anemia for the four selected Southern African countries

From: Maternal anemia is a potential risk factor for anemia in children aged 6–59 months in Southern Africa: a multilevel analysis

Characteristic Malawi Mozambique Namibia Zimbabwe
Anemia* Anemia* Anemia* Anemia*
No % Yes % No % Yes % No % Yes % No % Yes %
Exposure variable
Maternal anemic status
 No anemic 38.76 61.24a 40.04 59.96a 50.88 49.12b 44.26 55.74a
 Anemic 26.18 73.82 26.23 73.77 39.42 60.58 35.74 64.26
Individual-level
Biofuel smoke exposureβ
 No 58.82 41.18 53.85 46.15a 52.56 47.44 43.12 56.88
 Yes 35.30 64.70 31.87 68.13 46.99 53.01 41.71 58.29
Sex of child
 Male 34.24 65.76 32.72 67.28 45.22 54.78c 41.57 58.43
 Female 36.68 63.32 33.07 66.93 51.97 48.03 42.46 57.54
Child age in months
 6–11 9.33 90.67a⁑ 19.43 80.57a⁑ 33.99 66.01a⁑ 28.17 71.83a
 12–23 25.65 74.35 25.70 74.30 31.97 68.03 27.07 72.93
 24–35 35.75 64.25 33.55 66.45 49.80 50.20 43.06 56.94
 36–47 45.39 54.61 37.67 62.33 62.82 37.18 54.03 45.97
 48–59 50.87 49.13 46.84 53.16 68.68 31.32 61.19 38.81
Child’s birth order
 1 31.93 68.07 32.84 67.16 44.73 55.27 41.11 58.89
 2 38.52 62.01 35.45 64.55 50.36 49.64 40.88 59.12
 3 38.52 61.48 31.69 68.31 51.41 48.59 45.66 54.34
 4+ 34.96 65.04 32.29 67.71 50.32 49.68 41.82 58.18
Recent episodes of fever
 No 39.94 60.06a 34.74 65.26a 51.59 48.41b 42.36 57.64
 Yes 27.70 72.30 21.82 78.18 41.95 58.05 39.25 60.75
Recent episodes of diarrhea
 No 37.38 62.62a 33.94 66.06b 52.19 47.81a 43.28 56.72b
 Yes 26.00 74.00 25.00 75.00 36.69 63.31 35.48 64.52
Children are stunted
 No 38.60 61.40a 38.14 61.86a 50.06 49.94 43.55 56.45c
 Yes 32.06 67.94 26.52 73.48 44.44 55.56 39.08 60.92
Children are underweight
 No 36.71 63.29a 34.58 65.42a 48.16 51.84 42.58 57.42
 Yes 27.13 72.87 22.83 77.17 52.86 47.14 37.23 62.77
Mother’s age in years
 15–24 31.44 68.56c 29.37 70.63 38.58 61.42a 36.78 63.22a
 25–34 37.99 62.01 34.88 65.12 51.57 48.43 43.77 56.23
 35–49 35.69 64.31 34.16 65.84 55.63 44.37 46.99 53.01
Mother’s educational level
 No education 29.79 70.21b 30.27 69.73a 47.67 52.33 38.33 61.67
 Primary 35.55 64.45 31.32 68.68 47.89 52.11 39.74 60.26
 Secondary and above 42.81 57.19 50.50 49.50 49.15 50.85 43.29 56.71
Total children ever born
 1 26.87 73.13c⁑ 31.28 68.72 42.63 57.37c⁑ 37.41 62.59c⁑
 2 37.92 62.08 36.49 63.51 50.70 49.30 43.43 56.57
 3 40.14 59.86 30.16 69.84 52.11 47.89 45.06 54.94
 4 33.75 66.25 35.11 64.89 49.57 50.43 40.26 59.74
 5+ 36.26 63.74 32.30 67.70 51.64 48.36 45.53 54.47
Household wealth index
 Poorest 28.93 71.07a⁑ 24.13 75.87a⁑ 50.20 49.80c⁑ 41.57 58.43
 Poor 33.71 66.29 28.54 71.46 42.21 57.79 40.57 59.43
 Middle 33.28 66.72 33.00 67.00 46.81 53.19 43.51 56.49
 Richer 39.69 60.31 36.63 63.37 48.79 51.21 40.08 59.92
 Richest 47.69 52.31 50.42 49.58 60.56 39.44 46.15 53.85
Community-level (clusters)
Place of residence
 Urban 45.91 54.09b 43.00 57.00a 50.00 50.00 40.28 59.72
 Rural 34.75 65.25 30.21 69.79 47.80 52.20 42.57 57.43
Community maternal anemia
 Low anemia 37.23 62.77b 39.36 60.64a 50.36 49.64b 40.75 59.25c
 High anemia 28.13 71.87 27.87 72.13 38.26 61.74 46.48 53.52
Community parity
 Low 41.95 58.05a 36.85 63.15b 49.19 50.81 41.59 58.41
 High 31.74 68.26 30.61 69.39 47.27 52.73 42.36 57.64
Community wealth††
 Low 33.56 66.44a 28.31 71.69a 46.47 53.53c 42.33 57.67
 High 43.78 56.22 42.98 57.02 54.35 45.65 41.33 58.67
Community female education§
 Low 29.40 70.60a 29.35 70.65a 44.09 55.91 41.25 58.75
 High 37.30 62.70 39.12 60.88 49.34 50.66 42.24 57.76
Community distance to HF¥
 Low 43.00 57.00a 39.73 60.27a 50.15 49.85 41.61 58.39
 High 32.62 67.38 29.26 70.74 46.54 53.46 42.28 57.72
Community safe water access
 Low 31.66 68.34c 28.44 71.56a 50.52 49.48 40.24 59.76
 High 36.71 63.29 42.88 57.12 48.37 51.63 42.43 57.57
  1. Note: aP < 0.0001; bP < 0.001; cP < 0.05; Cochran-Armitage Trend Test – statistical trend analysis; *Children with hemoglobin levels of less than 11 g/dL adjusted for altitude; β wood, straw, animal dung, and crop residues used as cooking fuels percent of women with Hb levels less than 12 g/dL; percent of women with fertility rate of 5 children and above; †† percent of households categorized above 60% of wealth index; § percent of women with primary school education and above; ¥ percent of households perceived distance to the nearest health facility as a big problem; percent of household with access to clean and safe drinking water sources specified by WHO/Unicef [34]